The IPO Buzz: Korean Barbecue Chain Heats Up Short Holiday Week

Fire up the grill. GEN Restaurant Group, Inc. (GENK proposed), the owner of the GEN Korean BBQ chain, is the headliner of this short holiday week, which began with Father’s Day (Sunday, June 18, 2023) and included Juneteenth today (Monday, June 19, 2023). The California-based company’s IPO is coming hot on the heels of the blockbuster IPO last week of CAVA Group Inc. (CAVA), the Mediterranean fast-casual restaurant chain. CAVA’s stock scored a moonshot during its first day of NASDAQ trading on Thursday (June 15, 2023) and closed with a gain of 99 percent. CAVA finished the week with a 73 percent gain. The U.S. stock market was closed today for the federal Juneteenth holiday.

GEN Restaurant Group’s IPO is small – just 3 million shares at $10.00 to $12.00 to raise $33.0 million. The IPO is scheduled for pricing at mid-week. Roth Capital Partners is the sole book-runner. The Craig-Hallum Group and The Benchmark Company are the co-managers.

GEN Korean BBQ offers an all-you-can-eat menu that includes beef and pork, poultry, seafood and mixed vegetables. Diners serve as their own chefs by preparing food on a grill embedded in the center of each table. The meals are served family style.

GEN Restaurant Group is profitable. The company earned net income of $11.4 million on revenue of $169.0 million for the 12 months that ended March 31, 2023.

If priced at the $11.00 mid-point, GEN Restaurant Group would have a valuation of $342.56 million. That’s just a smidgen above the $300 million ceiling for small-cap deals.

The company, based in Cerritos, California, was founded in 2011 by two Korean immigrants, Jae Chang and David Kim. As of May 26, 2023, GEN Restaurant Group operated 32 company-owned GEN Korean BBQ restaurants in California, Arizona, Nevada, Hawaii, Texas and New York.

GEN Restaurant Group’s IPO is the largest deal on this week’s IPO Calendar, which includes four micro-cap deals. Bankers expect to raise a total of $87.6 million this week, if all five deals get done.

Stay tuned.

(For more information about this company, please check the IPO Calendar and the individual IPO Profiles found on’s website.)

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