The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf, an American coffee chain owned by a consortium led by Mirae Asset Global Investments Private Equity, will be sold to a consortium of franchise holders in the Philippines and Vietnam.
The Mirae Asset Global Investments Private Equity-led consortium signed a deal with Philippines' Jollibee Foods Corp. and Vietnamese franchise brand Viet Thai International Co. on July 24 to sell a 100 percent stake in the specialty coffee and tea brand, according to investment banking (IB) industry sources. The Mirae Asset consortium currently holds a 75 percent stake in The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf, with the remaining 25 percent owned by existing shareholders. After the acquisition, Jollibee Foods will hold an 80 percent stake in the U.S. coffee chain and Viet Thai the remaining 20 percent. The deal is reportedly worth US$350 million (410 billion won).
Jollibee Foods is the largest fast food operator in the Philippines. It operates more than 3,000 outlets across the world under its six subsidiaries, including Jollibee, Chowking, Greenwhich, Red Ribbon and Mang Inasal. Viet Thai is the biggest coffee chain in Vietnam which runs Highlands Coffee and Pho 24 noodle chains. It has 233 outlets across the country as of the end of last year.
Mirae Asset Private Equity has become the first South Korean private equity unit to buy the headquarters of a global brand and sell it to companies in other countries. It acquired Acushnet Holdings Co., which operates sporting goods brands such as Titleist and FootJoy, in 2011but it collected its investment by listing the firm on the New York Stock Exchange.
The Mirae Asset consortium has finally clinched the deal after two attempts. It tried to close the deal with an American firm in August last year but failed to narrow the price gap between the potential buyer and the major shareholder. The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf is a global coffee chain founded by Herbert Hyman in the United States in 1963. It has over 900 outlets in 30 different countries.