Intelligentsia becomes latest in big business buy up

Intelligentsia has become the latest specialty roaster to be brought out by big business, with Peet’s Coffee & Tea announcing its acquisition of the company. In a statement released last week, the Chicago-based roaster said that despite now having access to Peet’s resources and scale, it would continue to operate independently. The statement said that while Peet’s have purchased a majority stake in Intelligentsia, its Co-Founders, Doug Zell and Emily Mange, as well as Co-Owner Geoff Watts, would retain involvement in the company’s operations. Intelligentsia’s Zell said that Peet’s respects the specialty roaster’s vision and shares the same values as the three partners. “Emily and I both spent many years in the Bay Area and watched first-hand as Peet’s scaled their business while staying committed to their quality and craft,” said Zell. “Peet’s is where I started my career in coffee and I’m delighted to be working with them again.” The announcement comes just weeks after Peet’s signed an agreement to acquire Portland-based Stumptown Coffee Roasters. Stumptown, which operates 10 stores across Portland, Seattle, New York and Los Angeles, emphasised its intention to also maintain independence, despite handing over the reigns. “Stumptown has grown significantly over the last five years while maintaining our culture every step of the way,” said Joth Ricci, President of Stumptown Coffee Roasters. Peet’s were successful in acquiring ownership of Stumptown from its majority shareholders, including TSG Consumer Partners LLC. “We are grateful for TSG’s partnership during that time,” said Ricci. Peet’s is a private business owned by JAB Holding Co. It has more than 150 retail stores in nine states across the United States. JAB Holding Co’s subsidiaries include a majority stake in Jacobs Douwe Egberts, the coffee giant which holds leading market positions in more than two-dozen companies, a majority stake in Caribou Coffee Company, and many more.

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