Centerbridge In Talks To Buy Rock Bottom Restaurants

Centerbridge Partners is in talks to buy Rock Bottom Restaurants, banking and financing sources say.

Centerbridge is currently in the market for a $150 million loan to back the deal, sources say. Wells Fargo is lead agent on the loan package while GE is the co-agent. The deal includes a $25 million revolving credit and a $125 million term loan A, according to Thomson Reuters Loan Pricing Corp.

“They are pitching a senior-only deal at about 3x leverage with pricing in the L +550 range,” a source says.

Rock Bottom Restaurants, of Louisville, Colo., operates 102 casual dining restaurants, including 38 Brewery restaurants and 64 Old Chicago restaurants. The company was founded in 1976 by Frank Day, who is now chairman. Rock Bottom went private in 1999 and produced $304 million in revenue in 2009, according to the Rock Bottom web site.

Rock Bottom has been up for sale, on and off, for years, one buyout executive says. The restaurant chain currently has EBITDA of roughly $44 million, Thomson Reuters LPC said.

Centerbridge, a New York buyout shop, was co-founded by Jeff Aronson, who was previously a partner at restructuring firm Angelo, Gordon & Co. Last month, Centerbridge bought Ally Financial’s resort unit.

Officials for Centerbridge and Rock Bottom couldn’t be reached for comment.