MN Coffee Giant Buys Bagel Chain

The two companies previously experimented in shared retail space.

Photo by Gabriel Vanslette (CC-BY-SA 3.0)

DALLAS – Caribou Coffee reached a deal to purchase Bruegger’s Bagels chain from its Dallas’ based parent company, the company announced Thursday in a press release.

The deal is expected to be finalized by the end of September, and the terms of the deal have yet to be released by either company.

Le Duff America, a U.S. based subsidiary of the French restaurant conglomerate Groupe Le Duff, is selling Bruegger’s Bagels as part of its current re-branding strategy.

“With the announced sale of Bruegger’s Bagels and the successful refranchising of la Madeleine, we are ahead of plan in our asset-light strategy to dramatically grow our company over the next decade,” Le Duff America CEO Olivier Poirot said in a press release. “The recent transactions strongly reinforce our balance sheet and shift our mindset so we can focus on our French heritage brands, including the upcoming U.S. launch of Brioche Doree, and continued growth in North America through franchising.”

There are currently 263 Brueggers’ Bagels locations across the United States, according to its website. Of these 41 are located within Minnesota.

Caribou Coffee is in turn owned by JAB Holding Co., a Luxembourg based company. The Star Tribune reports that JAB has been aggressively purchasing a number of coffee shop and restaurant chains in North America. Most recently in April of this year, JAB Holding Co. acquired the St. Louis-based Panera Bread Company. The price tag for the 2,000 locations for the soup, salad, and sandwich franchise totaled $7.5 billion including debt. The previous year the company acquired the Krispy Kreme doughnut chain for $1.35 billion

JAB also currently owns Einstein Bros. Bagels. Caribou has previously engaged in partnerships with Bruegger’s in co-branded retail spots, reports the Star Tribune. That experiment ended after JAB bought Einstein Noah and its over 800 locations, with Caribou switching to partnering with Einstein. A number of these hybrid stores can be found around the Twin Cities.

Anders Koskinen