VEVEY, SWITZERLAND — Nestle SA is acquiring Seattle’s Best Coffee from Starbucks Corp., Seattle. Terms of the agreement were not disclosed.
The Seattle’s Best Coffee business includes whole bean, roast and ground packaged coffee as well as K-Cup pods that are available in a variety of roasts and flavor profiles. Starbucks acquired the business in 2003.
The acquisition will allow Nestle to add Seattle’s Best Coffee to the global coffee alliance, a partnership between Nestle and Starbucks, and add depth to Nestle’s North America coffee portfolio by expanding the company’s position in the category, according to the company.
“Our partnership with Starbucks has confirmed Nestle’s leading position in the dynamic and growing global coffee market,” said David Rennie, head of Nestle coffee brands. “With the well-known Seattle’s Best Coffee brand, we will continue to build our leadership in coffee by offering consumers more choice for their everyday coffee.”
The divestment of Seattle’s Best Coffee will allow Starbucks to focus on its core business.
“We continue to deepen our partnership with Nestle to deliver the best of the Starbucks experience to our customers in channels outside of our retail stores,” said Michael Conway, group president, Starbucks International and Channel Development. “We’re confident that Nestle will continue to grow the Seattle’s Best Coffee brand as we focus on our strategy to elevate the premium coffee experience for consumers through the Starbucks brand.”
The alliance between Nestle and Starbucks was formed in 2018. It is a perpetual licensing agreement between the two companies that allows Nestle to sell and distribute some Starbucks products at retail and foodservice outside Starbucks stores around the world. Nestle paid Starbucks $7.15 billion as part of the agreement.In 2021, total global sales of Starbucks products distributed by Nestle reached 3.1 billion Swiss francs ($3.09 billion). Nestle sells the products in 80 markets around the world.