Cooks Global Foods to expand Mojo Coffee Cartel in US

New Zealand-based Cooks Global Foods has entered into a conditional agreement to acquire 100 per cent of the shares in Mojo Coffee Cartel. The transaction values the roastery at NZD $19 million (about USD $12.6 million), to be paid through a combination of cash and shares. “Mojo is a well-established, popular, profitable business with a highly-successful brand with a network of 36 cafés in Wellington and Auckland,” says Keith Jackson, Cooks’ Executive Chairman. “It has the potential to boost our international growth ambitions, particularly in the US, where it has already established a strong presence in Chicago with increasing customer awareness and American’s developing taste for good coffee.” Following the acquisition, Mojo Co-founder Steve Gianoutsos and executives Katy Ellis and John Holloway will join Cooks’ senior management team while continuing to run the Mojo business. Mojo already operates one existing store, pantry and coffee roastery in Chicago. Cooks intends for Steve Gianoutsos to lead the US expansion. “Since we started Mojo in Wellington 15 years ago, it has grown significantly and is now a highly recognised brand synonymous with great coffee,” Gianoutsos says. “We think Cooks is going to be really good for us in helping expand Mojo. Their experience in international markets and strategy to look globally is going to get our international expansion really firing. It’s something we’ve been pushing for some time. I’ve been working in the flagship Chicago store and we’re going to look to push out into the US and beyond.” The acquisition, which is subject to the conditions being satisfied, will give Cooks a New Zealand presence and significantly enhance its scale. It will extend Cooks’ global store network to 142 stores and accelerate its transition to generating positive cashflow. Concurrent with the acquisition, and in order to fund the cash component of the purchase price, Cooks intends to seek new capital.

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