November 6, 2019 / 3:25 PM / 12 days ago

Outback owner Bloomin' Brands to explore sale, shares rise

Nov 6 (Reuters) - Outback Steakhouse owner Bloomin’ Brands Inc said on Wednesday it would explore strategic options, including a sale, two months after activist investor Jana Partners disclosed plans to push for changes at the company.

Shares of Bloomin’ Brands rose about 9% after the company’s announcement.

“Despite this continued progress, we believe the current stock price does not reflect the value of the company. That is why the time is right to explore strategic alternatives,” David Deno, chief executive officer of Bloomin’ Brands, said in a statement.

Jana Partners was not immediately available for comment.

In August, the hedge fund disclosed a 9% stake in Bloomin’ Brands and said it plans to discuss strategic alternatives with the management, returning for the second time, after reaching a settlement in 2018.

Bloomin’ Brands had a market capitalization of $1.82 billion as of Tuesday’s close. (Reporting by Soundarya J in Bengaluru; Editing by Maju Samuel)

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