Joh. A. Benckiser to Acquire D.E. Master Blenders in $10B Deal

April 12, 2013 6:35 AM EDT
The owner of Caribou Coffee and Peet's Coffee & Tea is about to get a little more formidable.

Data out Friday has an investor group led by Joh. A. Benckiser GmbH (JAB) moving to acquire D.E. Master Blenders NV, owner of the Douwe Egberts coffee brand, in a deal valued at €7.5 billion (about $9.8 billion).

Disclosure of the discussions were made a few weeks back, but today's news has the JAB group willing to pony-up €12.50 per share for D.E. Master Blenders. The latest offer is slightly below the €12.75 originally offered, noted the WSJ on Friday.

Sara Lee (Hillshire Brands (NYSE: HSH)) spun off D.E. Master Blenders last year. The company has about $4 billion in annual sales, putting it as number three in the global coffee-roasting segment behind such names as Kraft (Nasdaq: KRFT) and Nestle.

The agreement between JAB and D.E. Master Blenders includes a provision for cancellation if a superior offer is received.

Peers on watch today include Starbucks (Nasdaq: SBUX), The J.M. Smucker Co. (NYSE: SJM). and Green Mountain Coffee Roasters (Nasdaq: GMCR), among others.

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