CINCINNATI (FOX19) - A Cincinnati Reds co-owner completed a purchase agreement with Skyline Chili Monday.
President and CEO of Skyline Kevin R. McDonnell announced that Thomas L. Williams bought a stake in the company.
Officials say that the Williams family (along with internal business partners and associates), McDonnell, and the Greater Cincinnati Foundation will be Skyline owners. The Greater Cincinnati Foundation became a partial owner in 2019 by donating ownership shares worth $8 million to establish the Skyline Chili Community Fund.
“It is very important to me that Skyline carry on just like it always has, McDonnell said. “Many restaurant brands have been acquired by private equity investors, who often have very short-term investment strategies and no personal connection to the brand they are acquiring. In our case, it was critical to find a buyer who has demonstrated a commitment to the local community as well as a long-term investment horizon. Tom really understands and loves Skyline and our importance to the community.”
Offiicials say Williams is not only a co-owner of the Reds, but he is also vice president of the team and is a lifelong Cincinnati resident.
“I have long enjoyed and admired Skyline Chili and what it represents,” Williams said. “I am truly appreciative of this opportunity, and I look forward to working with Kevin and his team to continue growing this wonderful brand and providing stewardship for one of our community’s most valued assets. Our family is extremely proud to make this acquisition as it keeps in line with our thesis of investing in strong local brands that also have a civic responsibility. In this transaction, we have included some of our current local partners that share these values.”
Even though Williams has a partial stake in Skyline, the company will still be privately owned.
Williams also serves on the boards of The Western & Southern Financial Group, Nehemiah Manufacturing, Eleeo Brands, Cincinnati Business Committee (CBC), Cincinnati Center City Development Company (3CDC), and JobsOhio.
Skyline, founded by Nicholas Lambrinides in 1949, has over 135 restaurants in the Tri-State area and five restaurants in Florida.
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