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AFC Enterprises, Inc. (Nasdaq: AFCE) today announced that the company purchased the remaining 838,637 shares of AFC common stock held by longtime shareholder PENMAN Private Equity and Mezzanine Fund, L.P. at a purchase price of $21.65 per share. The repurchase was conducted as part of AFC's ongoing $100 million share repurchase program.
Frank Belatti, Chairman and CEO, stated, "During our analyst conference we committed to our investors that AFC would be aggressive in repurchasing our stock. We believe our stock is undervalued and since AFC continues to generate strong free cash flow and earnings growth, when the opportunity to repurchase a large block of shares became available we were in a position to take advantage of it. Our EPS guidance of $2.01 for 2003 assumed a certain level and timing of stock repurchases and this transaction is consistent with that plan."
PENMAN Private Equity and Mezzanine Fund, L.P. had been a private equity investor of AFC since 1996 with an original position of 1,574,637 shares. PENMAN previously sold 736,000 shares of AFC common stock as part of AFC's secondary offering of 8,050,000 shares of common stock in December 2001.