US: JAB Acquires Panera Bread In $7.5bn Deal

JAB Holding continues to expand its presence in the hospitality market, this time with the acquisition of restaurant chain Panera Bread for around $7.5bn.  The deal, which includes debt of around $340m, is expected to close during the third quarter of 2017.

Panera operates more than 2,000 outlets that generate around $5bn in sales annually.  The chain will now join JAB’s stable of QSR banners, including Krispy Kreme and Caribou Coffee.  JAB is acquiring Panera through JAB BV, an investment vehicle of JAB Consumer Fund and JAB Holding Company, both of whom invest in “companies with premium brands, attractive growth and strong margin dynamics in the Consumer Goods category”.

Ron Shaich, Founder, Chairman and CEO of Panera, noted: “In more than 25 years as a publicly traded company, Panera has created significant shareholder value. Indeed, Panera has been the best performing restaurant stock of the past twenty years – up over 8,000%. Today’s transaction is a direct reflection of those efforts, and delivers substantial additional value for our shareholders.”

Shaich and entities affiliated with him, accounting for around 15.5% of the Company’s voting share, have already approved the deal.  It will now be put forward to all Panera shareholders, and if approved, the company will become privately held while continuing to be operated independently by the existing management team.

NAM Implications:
  • FYI European private investment firm JAB Holding Company have controlling stakes in coffee brands like Keurig Green Mountain, Jacobs Douwe Egberts (JDE), Peet’s Coffee & Tea, Espresso House as well as in Einstein Noah Restaurant and Caribou Coffee Company…
  • JAB Holding Co. also has majority shareholding in brands like Coty Inc., Jimmy Choo, Bally and Belstaff and a minor stake in Reckitt Benckiser.
  • In other words, this latest acquisition adds considerably to an already influential company.
  • i.e. watch this space…