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Photo: Alexi Rosenfeld/Getty Images

Dunkin' Brands, operator of both Dunkin' Donuts and Baskin-Robbins, agreed on Friday to be taken private for nearly $11.3 billion, including debt, by Inspire Brands, a restaurant platform sponsored by private equity firm Roark Capital.

Why it matters: Buying Dunkin’ will more than double Inspire’s footprint, making it one of the biggest restaurant deals in the past 10 years. This could ultimately set up an IPO for Inspire, which already owns Arby's, Jimmy John's and Buffalo Wild Wings.

  • Dunkin' was private equity-owned before going public in 2011. Two of its former private equity partners, Mark Nunnelly of Bain Capital and Tony DiNovi of THL Partners, remain on its board as independent directors.

What they're saying: “Dunkin’ and Baskin-Robbins are category leaders with more than 70 years of rich heritage, and together they are two of the most iconic restaurant brands in the world,” co-founder and CEO of Inspire Brands, Paul Brown, said in a statement, per CNBC.

  • “By joining Inspire, these brands will add complementary guest experiences and occasions to our current portfolio.

The bottom line: "As stay-at-home orders have shifted working patterns, customers have been coming to its stores later in the day than they used to and spending more on newer and more expensive items like espresso and other specialty beverages. Dunkin’ already brings in more than half its revenue through drinks, and it dropped 'Donut' from its name last year as it seeks to shift its emphasis to coffee and take on Starbucks more directly," writes the New York Times.

Go deeper

Dan Primack, author of Pro Rata
39 mins ago - Economy & Business

Coinbase files to go public

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

Cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase on Thursday filed to go public via a $1 billion direct listing.

Why it matters: This comes in the midst of a crypto boom, and the listing may further legitimize the industry.

Trump’s blunt weapon: State GOP leaders

Trump supporters rally near Mar-a-Lago on Feb. 15. Photo: Joe Raedle/Getty Images

President Trump didn't have to punish his critics in Congress — his allies back in the states instantly and eagerly did the dirty work.

Why it matters: Virtually every Republican who supported impeachment was censured back home, or threatened with a primary challenge.

The modern way to hire a big-city police chief

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

When it comes to picking a city's top cop, closed-door selection processes have been replaced by highly public exercises where everyone gets to vet the candidates — who must have better community-relations skills than ever.

Why it matters: In the post-George-Floyd era, with policing under utmost scrutiny, the choosing of a police chief has become something akin to an election, with the need to build consensus around a candidate. And the candidate pool has gotten smaller.