Report: Ga.-based Inspire Brands in talks to purchase Dunkin' Brands

The Atlanta-based Inspire Brands is reportedly in talks to purchase Dunkin' Brands.

Credit: David Tulis / AJC

Credit: David Tulis / AJC

The Atlanta-based Inspire Brands is reportedly in talks to purchase Dunkin' Brands.

The Sandy Springs-based Inspire Brands is in talks to purchase the parent company of Dunkin' Donuts and Baskin Robbins, The New York Times reported Sunday.

The deal with Dunkin' Brands, which has a company valuation at nearly $9 billion, could be announced Monday, according to the report, which cites two confidential sources. The New York Times said the two people requested anonymity because the talks are confidential and they cautioned that the deal was not yet final.

Inspire Brands already owns Arby’s, Buffalo Wild Wings, Sonic and Jimmy John’s.

When contacted Sunday by The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, an Inspire Brands spokeswoman declined to discuss the possible sale.

“We do not comment on rumors around potential acquisition targets,” Selden Hunnicutt said in an emailed statement.

In July, Massachusetts-based Dunkin' Brands announced plans to close up to 800 underperforming stores in the U.S., a result of the coronavirus pandemic. Closing the restaurants would allow their franchisees to reinvest in newer stores in higher-traffic areas, Dunkin' Chief Financial Officer Katherine Jaspon previously said.

Last year, Dunkin' dropped “Donut” from its name in an effort to shift its emphasis to coffee. The company has said the pandemic has changed business, with customers working at home and heading out for coffee later in the day.

Founded in February 2018, Inspire Brands now owns more than 11,000 restaurants and has tallied $14.6 billion in sales, according to the company’s website. On Thursday, Inspire announced that Arby’s restaurants would be returning to Mexico, where the first opened in Guadalajara last week.

Paul Brown, chief executive of Inspire Brands, the chain’s parent, called Arby’s Mexico launch “an exciting moment in the brand’s international growth as we bring our meat-focused menu to new guests around the world.”