Norbrook Equity Partners, together with co-investors, has acquired the KFC and Dairy Queen franchises in Panama.

The acquisition was facilitated through Platinum Brands, a Panamanian special-purpose vehicle, which now owns 44 KFC and 35 Dairy Queen outlets in the country.

The deal positions Norbrook as the exclusive franchisee for both brands in Panama, overseeing operations that employ 1,700 people.

The franchises were previously held by Franquicias Panameñas (FranPan), a 60-year-old family business with a substantial presence in the quick service restaurant industry, managing 200 outlets across a range of brands.

FranPan spokesperson Liza Henriquez was quoted by media agencies as saying: “We are delighted to have found in Norbrook and its management team people who share our values and understand the potential of KFC and Dairy Queen in Panama.

“This transition allows us to focus on our legacy while entrusting the future of these beloved brands to capable hands.”

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Norbrook Restaurant Holdings will hold a 60% stake in Platinum Brands, while the remaining interest will be shared among FirstRock Private Equity, Sygnus Deneb Investments and the Henriquez family.

The acquisition received financial backing from JMMB Bank (Jamaica), a long-standing financing partner of Norbrook, and BAC International.

The latter provided Platinum with the necessary acquisition financing, as well as comprehensive treasury management, transaction services and cash management solutions to support the newly expanded restaurant portfolio.

Norbrook Equity Partners executive chairman Khary Robinson said: “We are excited about the opportunity to lead the growth of these legendary franchises in Panama.

“Our collaboration with our investment partners and our newly appointed management team brings a wealth of experience and expertise, strengthening our position to drive these brands to new heights.

“This acquisition aligns with our vision for strategic investments in businesses with immense growth potential in the broader Caribbean and Latin American region.”