Private equity groups take stake in The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf

Reuters

By Olivia Oran

Sept 12 (Reuters) - Private equity firm Advent Internationaland an Asian partner have agreed to take a large stake in coffeeand tea retailer, The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf.

Boston-based Advent declined to disclose the size of theinvestment it had made in the privately held chain along withCDIB Capital, an Asian private equity investor. Other investorsin the deal include Asian firm Mirae Asset Private Equity andthe Sassoon family, the largest existing shareholder in thechain.

The transaction is the latest in a sector that has seen aslew of deals in the last year, including European investmentgroup Joh. A. Benckiser's acquisitions of D.E. Master BlendersNV, Peet's Coffee & Tea and Caribou Coffee, as well as StarbucksCorp's acquisition of Teavana.

Coffee is a staple for U.S. consumers, with over 76 percentreporting they have purchased the beverage in some form in thelast month, according to market research firm Mintel.

Founded in 1963 in Southern California, the chain has morethan 900 stores in 30 countries. It has expanded aggressively inAsia in particular, where its locations include China, India,Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore and Vietnam.

Advent has invested in retail companies including Five BelowInc, Party City, Charlotte Russe and LululemonAthletica.

The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf was advised by Barclays.

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