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California Pizza Kitchen
Schill, Michael J.; Shumadine, Elizabeth Case F-1553 / Published September 2, 2008 / 17 pages.
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Product Overview

This case examines the question of financial leverage at California Pizza Kitchen (CPK) in July 2007. With a highly profitable business and an aversion to debt, CPK management is considering a debt-financed stock buyback program. The case is intended to provide an introduction to the Modigliani and Miller capital structure irrelevance propositions and the concept of debt tax shields. With the background of a pizza company, the case provides an engaging context to discuss the "pizza graphs" that are commonly used in corporate finance curriculum to illustrate the wealth effects of capital structure decisions.

Learning Objectives

The case serves to motivate the following teaching objectives: 1. Introduce the Modigliani-Miller intuition of capital structure irrelevance; 2. Establish how the cost of equity is affected by capital structure decisions by defining financial risk and introducing the levered-beta capital asset pricing model (CAPM) equation; 3. Discuss interest tax deductibility and the valuation tax shields; 4. Explore the importance of debt capacity in a growing business.

  • Overview

    This case examines the question of financial leverage at California Pizza Kitchen (CPK) in July 2007. With a highly profitable business and an aversion to debt, CPK management is considering a debt-financed stock buyback program. The case is intended to provide an introduction to the Modigliani and Miller capital structure irrelevance propositions and the concept of debt tax shields. With the background of a pizza company, the case provides an engaging context to discuss the "pizza graphs" that are commonly used in corporate finance curriculum to illustrate the wealth effects of capital structure decisions.

  • Learning Objectives

    Learning Objectives

    The case serves to motivate the following teaching objectives: 1. Introduce the Modigliani-Miller intuition of capital structure irrelevance; 2. Establish how the cost of equity is affected by capital structure decisions by defining financial risk and introducing the levered-beta capital asset pricing model (CAPM) equation; 3. Discuss interest tax deductibility and the valuation tax shields; 4. Explore the importance of debt capacity in a growing business.