Sale of Peet’s Closes Stock, Ceases Trading


Stocks of specialty coffee pioneer Peet’s Coffee & Tea ceased trading on the NASDAQ Tuesday following completion of the acquisition by German conglomerate Joh. A Benckiser (JAB).

JAB paid $73.50 per share in cash, or $977.6 million for the company founded in 1966 in Berkeley, Calif. by Alfred Peet. Peet was an early tea authority who later became widely recognized as the grandfather of specialty coffee in the U.S.

The transaction was approved by Peet’s shareholders Oct. 26, 2012. Peet’s will continue to be operated by its current management team and employees.

The company gets more than half its revenue from its coffee shops and the rest from grocery sales, home delivery, and sales to food service and offices.

Benckiser holds a minority stake in D.E. Master Blenders 1753 (the coffee and tea division split from Sara Lee this summer).

In addition to JAB, BDT Capital Partners, LLC, a Chicago-based merchant bank that provides long-term private capital solutions to closely held companies, is a minority investor in this transaction.

Benckiser is the majority owner of Coty Inc., which is known for its celebrity fragrances and OPI nail polish. Coty announced last month that it is planning to go public and hopes to raise $700 million in an initial public offering. Bensckiser also owns Labelux, a luxury goods company with brands such as Jimmy Choo, Bally, and Belstaff.

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Source: Peet’s Coffee & Tea, Huffington Post