San Antonio

Whataburger Hires Morgan Stanley, Explores Possibility of a Sale

Whataburger is synonymous with Texas, you could call it an institution

Texas-based Whataburger confirms it has hired a investment firm Morgan Stanley to explore the possibility of selling the burger franchise.

"Our company is growing and is always attractive to investors, and we've brought in Morgan Stanley to help us explore our options," Whataburger said in a statement. "We have always evaluated the opportunities that can accelerate growth and maintain the success of our brand, and we will continue to do so in the future."

Whataburger has 820 locations across 10 states, and some very loyal customers. So, news of a possible sale has some of the burger chain's biggest fans asking questions.

"Are the new owners going to change anything?" asked Whataburger enthusiast Jeven Bell. "Are they going to take away from what Whataburger is known for?"

Harmon Dobson opened his first Whataburger in Corpus Christi in 1950. He wanted to create a burger that you had to pick up with two hands. Dobson's children still own the franchise.

Company vice president Joel Griffiths once told NBC 5's Kris Gutierrez he eats Whataburger every day, "almost without exception."

Selling the franchise could boost growth, but burger fans wonder at what cost?

"I'm guessing they won't change the flavor of the burgers, but you never know. With new owners, come new things," said Whataburger customer Ly Pham.

Fans understand the upside of selling, but fear the unknown.

"Just the only thing that I'm kind of worried about is changing what Whataburger is about, which is just that Texas vibe," said Bell.

CLICK HERE to read more on this story from our media partners at The Dallas Morning News.

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