On a side street off Times Square brokers and traders lined up earlier this week for a rare treat outside of Nasdaq’s Manhattan market center: free Fatburgers. Mark Elenowitz, the investment banker behind the $24 million Regulation A capital raise of FAT Brands, was glowing with pride. FAT Brands opening IPO day was here and market interest had driven the stock to open above the $12 Reg A offer price. The first trade sold at $12.80 and the stock soared to $13.99 in the morning hours.
Elenowitz and his team at Tripoint Global Equities had worked all weekend to ensure the 2 million shares sold cleared the DTC (Depository Trust Company) and the hundreds of retail investors who bought stock through Tripoint’s online crowdfunding portal, BANQ, had their shares in their retail accounts available to trade immediately.
FAT Brands is controlled by Andy Wiederhorn, head of the investment firm Fog Cutter Capital Group. The Southern California burger joint Fatburger, often touted by Hollywood celebrities, was started by Lovie Yancey and Charles Simpson. Yancey first opened a three-seater burger stand in the late 1940s in front of her house in South Central Los Angeles.
FAT Brands, which stands for Fresh-Authentic-Tasty, owns multiple franchise chains focused on American food served in a fast casual setting. Fatburger is a 65-year-old company fashioned as a self-serve burger joint that competes with In-n-Out and Shake Shack (SHAK). Buffalo’s Café was founded in Roswell, Ga. in 1985, and is known for its chicken wings with 13 different sauces. And the company’s newest acquisition, Ponderosa and Bonanza Steakhouse, is a chain started in 1963 by Dan Blocker, who was known for his role as Hoss Cartwright in the TV western series Bonanza.
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New York securities attorney Darren Ofsink, once an active adviser to emerging growth companies seeking to go public through reverse mergers, pleaded guilty on Oct. 18 to one charge of conspiracy to commit securities fraud, for his role in the $86 million manipulation scheme of CodeSmart Holdings (ITEN).
Fast-casual dining franchise company FAT Brands expects to close it’s $24 million Reg A offering as soon as Oct. 20, according to company insiders. The quick closing follows reports that the company attracted millions of committed capital on its first day after the Securities and Exchange Commission qualified the offering on October 3. The owner of Fatburger and Buffalo’s Café is selling two million shares at $12, with a minimum investment of $500, from institutional and retail investors. The deal is being sold by Tripoint Global Securities as the exclusive bookrunner.
The broker-dealer division of Chicago-based Zacks Investment Research, has been charged by the Securities and Exchange Commission for failure to supervise staff who traded on non-public material information. The action is a blow to the nascent Reg A research market, where Zacks has been the first and only traditional sell-side broker to offer equity research on Reg A issuers.