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7 November 20182 minute read

DLA Piper advises Zensho Holdings on US$257 million acquisition of Advanced Fresh Concepts Corp.

DLA Piper has advised Zensho Holdings (Zensho), the largest food service company in Japan by sales, known for its beef bowl restaurant chains "Sukiya" and "Nakau", on its acquisition of California-based Advanced Fresh Concepts Corp. (AFC), an in-store sushi chain with more than 4,000 locations throughout the United States, Canada and Australia. The purchase price was US$257 million, the largest acquisition ever made by the Japanese restaurant chain operator, which is also one of the top-ten food service companies in the world.

Zensho intends to expand its business by utilizing AFC's local chain stores and procurement network. The transaction is expected to close by the end of November 2018, subject to regulatory approval.

The DLA Piper team consists of lawyers from both sides of the Pacific. The team was led by Tokyo-based partner Masahiko Ishida and San Diego-based partner Matt Leivo, with other members including partners Nate McKitterick and Stacy Paz in Silicon Valley, Rich Greenstein in Atlanta, Amy Carbins in Washington D.C., Paolo Morante in New York, of counsel Alexander Tuneski in Washington D.C., associates Shotaro Maruyama in Tokyo, and Shehzad Huda and Anthony Taranto in San Diego. Teams in Canada and Australia also provided their legal expertise on areas such as tax, employment and regulatory.