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ATLANTA -- Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen has paid $43 million to the family of Al Copeland, buying recipes owned by the estate of Al Copeland, who founded the fried chicken chain.

'This is an exciting and historic event representing a win for everyone involved,' said Cheryl Bachelder, CEO of Popeyes. 'We now have the recipes in house in perpetuity, and we thank the Copeland family for helping bring together the treasured recipes Popeyes is known for with the brand so beloved by its guests.'

With the purchase, Popeyes gets ownership of recipes from the Copeland estate. Popeyes had been paying $3.1 million annually in royalties to the Diversified Foods and Seasonings, the company owned by the Copeland estate, for the use of the recipes. The Copeland estate will continue to own the supply company and manufacture products for Popeyes under an exclusive contract until at least 2034.

'Reuniting the recipe with Popeyes strengthens the relationship between the Copeland family and Popeyes,' said Al Copeland, Jr. 'The transaction will allow DFS to focus on what we do best for Popeyes, producing and innovating the highest quality products, including cooked foods, spices, and breading systems. This agreement is right for Popeyes and right for the Copeland family.'

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