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LOS ANGELES-Johnson Development Corp., the locally based real estate and investment company headed by basketball legend Earvin “Magic” Johnson, has acquired the 47-store Fatburger restaurant chain and plans to open another 10 of the fast-food outlets next year.

Though all of the current Fatburger restaurants are in California, Johnson says he wants to expand into 10 more states and add as many as 100 stores over the next five years. The chain is a virtual Southern California institution, serving up belly-busting burgers that are as delicious as they are fattening.

Johnson Development already owns 28 Starbucks coffee stores and has previously announced plans to open 25 more. In addition, the company owns five movie theaters in California and other states.

A Johnson Development spokesperson wouldn’t disclose the purchase price of the burger chain, but Johnson himself says the company’s ambitious expansion plans won’t be hurt by the sagging economy. Even when times get tough, he says, consumers “don’t stop eating and they don’t stop drinking coffee.”

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