Starbucks to acquire Teavana for $620 million

by Keith Nunes
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SEATTLE — The Starbucks Coffee Co. has entered into an agreement to acquire Teavana Holdings, Inc., Atlanta, for $620 million in cash. Teavana is a specialty retailer offering a variety of loose-leaf teas, tea-wares and other tea-related merchandise through 300 company-owned stores and on its web site.

With its existing infrastructure, Starbucks said it plans to grow and extend Teavana’s reach in the marketplace.

“We believe the tea category is ripe for reinvention and rapid growth,” said Howard Schultz, chairman, president and chief executive officer of Starbucks. “The Teavana acquisition now positions us to disrupt and lead, just as we did with espresso starting three decades ago.

“Teavana’s world-class tea authority, coupled with the romance and theater of the retail experience that is the heart and soul of Starbucks heritage, will create a differentiated customer experience and business opportunity that delivers immediate value to shareholders. This complements our existing Tazo brand and gives us the unique opportunity to create a two-tiered market position.”

Starbucks anticipates the acquisition to be accretive to earnings by approximately 1c per share in fiscal year 2013, based off of the previously announced earnings targets.

“The acquisition of Teavana supports our growth strategy to innovate with new products, enter new categories, and expand into new channels of distribution,” said Jeff Hansberry, president of channel development and emerging brands for Starbucks, who will assume leadership of the new subsidiary. “Evolution Fresh, La Boulange and now Teavana demonstrate how Starbucks will add brands that strengthen our core offering and create a rich ecosystem of experiences with shared values, mutual efficiencies and complementary characteristics, thus forming tangible examples of the success of the Starbucks blueprint for growth and a differentiated health and wellness offering in the marketplace.”

This past June Starbucks acquired the La Boulange bakery brand for $100 million, and in November 2011 the company acquired the Evolution Fresh juice brand for $30 million.
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