Switzerland-based company Nestle has recently signed a treaty with one of its biggest competitors: Starbucks Corp. Nestle will be paying $7.15 billion in cash for the Starbucks business, which has annual sales of up to $2 billion, and plans to market the chain’s consumer and food-service products internationally. The arrangement does not include Ready-to-Drink drinks or the sales of products within Starbucks coffee shops.
The move comes as part of Nestle’s recent mission to attract higher-end coffee enthusiasts. Mark Schneider, Nestle CEO, said: “With Starbucks, Nescafe and Nespresso, we bring together three iconic brands in the world of coffee.”
Several hundred Starbucks employees will join the Nestle team, and will continue to operate in Seattle, Washington, once the agreement closes by the end of this year.
According to Bloomberg, “Nestle has been bolstering its presence in the U.S., and last year added niche brands Blue Bottle Coffee and Chameleon Cold-Brew to expand its portfolio. Nespresso has introduced a machine that’s more attuned to American’s preference for bigger cups of joe three years ago.”