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Canada's largest full‐service restaurant company Cara to add 'The Keg' to its brands

The Keg Steakhouse & Bar at Yonge and Eglinton in Toronto, Ontario.

Canada's largest full‐service restaurant company Cara is to merge with Keg Restaurants Ltd. The addition of 106 The Keg restaurants will provide Cara with a network of 1,365 restaurants.

Vancouver-based KRL is the owner/operator and franchisor of casual dining steakhouse restaurants operating under the trade name "The Keg Steakhouse & Bar" in Canada and select markets in the United States. Over its 45 year history and under Chief Executive Officer David Aisenstat's leadership for the last 20 years, The Keg has established an enviable brand name and reputation as the leader in service, food and ambiance in full service restaurants. Cara is Canada's largest operator and franchisor of full service restaurants and is the third largest of all restaurant groups in Canada.

With this merger, Mr. Aisenstat will assume oversight of Cara's higher-end casual brands, namely The Bier Markt, the Landing Group and Milestones restaurants. This will enable Cara to introduce into these brands the key success factors experienced by The Keg. Cara's size combined with The Keg will also provide synergistic opportunities in marketing, real estate and overall costs that will help further grow the Keg and Cara brands.

Mr. Aisenstat is currently President and CEO of KRL and will remain in this position while overseeing the three additional Cara brands. David will also join the Cara Board of Directors as Vice-Chairman. Bill Gregson will remain as President and CEO of Cara and will remain as Chairman of the Cara Board of Directors.

The Keg restaurants generate approximately $612.1 million in annual System Sales and approximately $23.5 million in Normalized EBITDA. When the transaction closes, Cara's Pro Forma System Sales (for the 12 months ended September 24, 2017) will increase to $3.4 billion and its Pro Forma Operating EBITDA (for the same period) will increase to $207.9 million, putting Cara on track to achieve the top end of its long-term (2020-2022) System Sales target and well within the Operating EBITDA target range.

Cara intends to change its corporate name to reflect this new business composition following the closing of the transaction.