Burger King has confirmed it is in takeover talks with Canadian coffee and doughnut chain Tim Hortons.
A merger would create the world’s third-largest fast-food combine, one with a stock market value of about $18 billion.
Burger King and Tim Hortons confirmed the talks on August 24 and said the new group would be headquartered in Canada, where corporate taxes are lower.
Burger King’s majority shareholder, 3G Capital, would stay in overall control.
New York and Rio de Janeiro-based investment company 3G Capital bought Burger King in 2010 for about $3.3 billion and floated the company in 2012, holding on to nearly 70% of the shares.
If a deal goes ahead, the remaining shares will be distributed between the current shareholders of Burger King and Tim Hortons.
According to reports, the companies will retain their separate brand identities but save costs by sharing corporate services.
Combined, Burger King and Tim Hortons would have an estimated revenue of $22 billion a year from around 18,000 restaurants in 100 countries.
Tim Hortons used to be owned by US fast-food chain Wendy’s, before being spun off as a separate company in 2006.
[youtube arQrijSt78Q 650]