Investing around $500 million in indie coffee brand, Blue Bottle, Nestlé has acquired 68 percent in the Bay Area- based company. Blue Bottle was founded in 2002 as a small roaster which currently has grown to 50 minimalist- cool- high end coffee shops in Bay Area, LA, NYC and Tokyo.
The investment will enable Blue Bottle to invest in new coffee technology along with expansion of its cafes in the US as well as abroad. Furthermore, the investment will also grow its consumer packaged goods. Blue Bottle plans to open 55 new café locations in 2017 alone, up from 29 current locations.
Nestlé is the world’s largest coffee producer with brands such as Nescafe and Nespresso and the new investment will give Nestlé entry point to the fast growing and trendy “third wave” coffee market. The deal is also part of a broader move for Nestlé to transform its portfolio as consumers are moving increasingly away from packaged and processed goods. Nestlé also announced that Blue Bottle will nonetheless work as an standalone entity including the current management team, including CEO Bryan Meehand and Founder and Chief Product Officer James Freeman. Management will hold on to 32% of the business.
Founded in 1866, Nestlé is the world’s largest food and beverage company that operates in 191 countries around the world. Nestlé has more than 2000 brands that enrich people’s lives and help people live a better and healthier future. Defining its three ambitious goals supporting the achievement of the UN Sustainable Development Goals Nestlé plans to help 50 million children live healthier lives, aims to improve 30 million livelihoods in communities directly connected to their business activities and strives for better environmental impacts in their operations.