Cara Operations Limited, the Ontario-based company that owns restaurant brands like Swiss Chalet, Kelsey's Neighbourhood Bar & Grill, Harvey's, Milestones Grill and Bar, and Montana's Cookhouse, purchased Quebec's iconic St-Hubert chicken brand today for just over half a billion dollars. The Wall Street Journal reports that the juggernaut acquisition "brings together two of Canada’s oldest food service companies, and would give Cara an office in Quebec" for the first time.
Cara's chairman and chief executive officer Bill Gregson remarked in a statement that the "transaction gives St-Hubert the opportunity to drive its restaurant growth through the addition of Cara brands in Quebec, utilizing the existing manufacturing facilities and supplier base." Jean-Pierre Leger, St-Hubert's chairman, assured that the purchase would open up "future prospects" for the company's employees. Despite the full-court PR press, others were less sanguine about the big announcement today.
Le déclin tranquille de l'économie québécoise. De plus en plus, une économie de succursales! pic.twitter.com/NmTtpLuxDq— François Legault (@francoislegault) March 31, 2016
Do. Not. Mess w St Hubert sauce "@CBCNews: Swiss Chalet/Cara buying St-Hubert for $537M https://t.co/TQuH2bsFYH pic.twitter.com/mFLuzPQh7Q"— Rosemary Barton (@RosieBarton) March 31, 2016
"Nous prévoyons plus de restaurants #StHubert, plus de production à Blainville et Boisbriand, donc plus d'employés..." - Bill Gregson— St-Hubert (@sthubert) March 31, 2016