Argosy Private Equity and MTN Capital today announced the acquisition of a controlling stake in Rita’s Franchise Company, LLC based in Trevose, Pennsylvania (“Rita’s”) — the world’s largest Italian Ice concept — from Falconhead Capital.

As part of the agreement, Kirk Griswold, Founding Partner at Argosy Private Equity, will join Rita’s board as Chairman and Jeff Moody will remain President and Chief Executive Officer. Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

Rita’s Italian Ice was founded in 1984 by former Philadelphia firefighter Bob Tumolo, who made and sold Italian Ice from his small porch window alongside his mother Elizabeth and brother John. Since, the brand has grown exponentially and today has more than 600 locations in 30 states, and 4 countries. The franchise company was recently recognized by Entrepreneur Magazine’s “2016 Franchise 500” and Nation’s Restaurant News “Consumer Picks 2016,” and continues to aggressively expand across the U.S.

“Being Philly based, we know firsthand the love that guests have for Rita’s,” said Griswold. “Falconhead and the executive leadership team have done a tremendous job growing this once regional brand nationally, and even internationally. We’re looking forward to working with Rita’s management team and devoted franchise partners to continue the company’s growth and extend its guest loyalty and unique brand equity to each and every store, systemwide.”

January 3, 2017