Sara Lee to buy rights for Senseo

by Staff
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DOWNERS GROVE, ILL. — Sara Lee Corp. has agreed to enter a nine-year partnership with Philips on Philips-branded consumer coffee systems and will acquire full rights to the Senseo trademark.

“This acquisition and partnership allow us to strengthen our relationship with Philips to focus on innovation in coffee technology and aggressively push geographical expansion,” said Jan Bennink, executive chairman of the board for Sara Lee. “Philips’ long history of innovation, combined with superior retail strength in our key markets makes it the prefect partner to work with as we take Senseo to the next level.”

Sara Lee and Philips currently co-own the brand with each having a 50% stake, and they have been partnering on the brand since 2001.

“Owning 100% of Senseo, our most global coffee brand, is a major step for ‘CoffeeCo’ as we prepare for our upcoming spin-off into a separate, publicly-traded company,” said Michiel Herkemij, chief executive officer for Sara Lee Coffee and Tea. “With increased innovation, we believe this move will enable us to build on our leading position and further position Senseo as a global power brand in the coffee segment.”

After closing, Sara Lee expects to expand the brand into new coffee segments and markets.

As a part of the transaction, Sara Lee will pay Philips about $224 million.

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