Pret a Manger sold for $2B to Bridgepoint

Pret A Manger

PA Pret A Manger is being sold to JAB Holdings

Bridgepoint Capital has agreed to sell Pret A Manger to the German investor that owns Krispy Kreme donuts and Douwe Egberts coffee in a deal said to value the sandwich chain at more than £1.5bn.

The companies expect the deal to finalize this summer, and Pret CEO Clive Schlee promised al 12,000 employees of the brand a £1,000 bonus at that time.

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JAB, run by Peter Harf, Bart Becht and Olivier Goudet, has spent more than $30 billion (U.S.) building its coffee-focused empire, which also includes Keurig Green Mountain Inc. of the US and three chains in Europe - Espresso House in Sweden, Baresso in Denmark and Balzac in Germany.

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Pret A Manger, which sells sandwiches and salads made fresh daily in its stores, generates annual revenue of 879 million pounds, Bridgepoint said in the statement.

"The £1,000 bonus shall be paid to all workers who're on the payroll throughout the week the deal completes", he mentioned.

Angus Grierson, managing director at LGB Corporate Finance, commented: "The sale of Pret a Manger to JAB is a significant win for private over public markets".

JAB also owns or has majority stakes in United States coffee chains Peet's Coffee and Tea and Caribou Coffee, as well as U.S. coffee and bagel purveyor Einstein Noah, plus doughnut and USA coffee chain Krispy Kreme.

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JAB Holdings is one of those companies, though Nestle still holds top spot in the coffee market.

The move for Pret is JAB's first for a UK-headquartered business and it also gives it another asset for which coffee is a central component of its offer. It took control of Dr Pepper Snapple in January for $18.7bn in cash.

"Pret has a unique culture and is a great British success story".

"This has been a successful investment for Bridgepoint and illustrates how private equity, investing for the long-term and working with talented management can deliver strong growth for the benefit of all stakeholders: customers, employees and suppliers and create real value for the wider economy".

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