• Health-food company said to be valued at as much as $1 billion
  • Maker of rice bowls could go public as soon as next year

Freshii, the health-food restaurant chain that serves salads and rice bowls, is interviewing bankers to explore a possible initial public offering, people with knowledge of the matter said.

The company, which has offices in both Chicago and Toronto, could go public as soon as next year, said one of the people, who asked not to be identified because the information is private. Freshii could be valued at as much as $1 billion in an IPO and would probably list on a U.S. exchange, another person said.

The Freshii chain is said to be talking to banks about an IPO.
The Freshii chain is said to be talking to banks about an IPO.
Source: Bloomberg

Freshii, which sells foods like the Teriyaki Twist salad and Green Energy Juice, has grown through franchises and has about 200 locations. It has said it plans to double that number by the end of next year. The food maker also has about 20 locations on college campuses as part of a partnership with Aramark, which provides food services to institutions including universities.

Matthew Corrin, founder and CEO of Freshii, declined to comment.

Corrin, who once did marketing work for Oscar de la Renta, founded Freshii in 2005 with a $250,000 loan from his parents. As U.S. consumers, and particularly millennials, seek out healthier food options, Freshii aims to establish itself as a go-to option for quick, affordable and healthful meals, Corrin has said.

Freshii recently opened an outlet in a Target Corp. location in the Chicago area, with eight more cafes set to open inside the big-box stores this year.

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