Groupe Le Duff SA has acquired Bruegger’s Enterprises, which is backed by Sun Capital Partners. Financial terms were not announced. Brueggers is an operator and franchisor of fast casual bakery cafes. News of the sale was first reported by Buyouts earlier this month.
Bruegger’s Enterprises (“Bruegger’s” or the “Company”), a leading operator of bakery-cafés and an affiliate of private investment firm Sun Capital Partners, Inc. (“Sun Capital”), today announced that it has been acquired by Le Duff America, Inc., the North American subsidiary of Groupe Le Duff SA. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
Bruegger’s is a leading operator and franchisor of fast casual bakery-cafés specializing in bagels, breads, wraps, signature sandwiches, crisp salads, hearty soups, natural cream cheeses, gourmet coffee, and desserts. Headquartered in Burlington, Vermont, Bruegger’s was founded in 1983 with an emphasis on convenience in order to better serve customers with busy lifestyles. Bruegger’s was acquired by an affiliate of Sun Capital in 2003 at a time when both sales and profitability were declining.
Since the acquisition by a Sun Capital affiliate, Bruegger’s has reduced the Company’s cost base, remodeled nearly all locations, introduced new product lines, and significantly increased store count through the opening of new Company-operated and franchised units as well as through add-on acquisitions. As a result, sales at Bruegger’s have increased by 76% while EBITDA has more than doubled since acquisition and the Company has grown into the second largest chain of bakery-cafés across the U.S. and Canada. Bruegger’s operates under the Bruegger’s, Timothy’s Coffees of the World, Michel’s Baguette, and mmmuffins brands in Canada.
“We are pleased to add Bruegger’s as the newest member of our international family of brands” said Louis Le Duff, founder of Groupe Le Duff SA, a global bakery and restaurant company established in 1976 in Brest, France. Today headquartered in Rennes, France, Groupe Le Duff SA has had a presence in North America since 1987 and the acquisition of Bruegger’s is part of a broader growth strategy which includes strategic acquisitions and organic growth; 70 new restaurants and bakeries are planned this year alone. With the acquisition of Bruegger’s, Groupe Le Duff SA becomes the second largest company in the café-bakery sector in the world, with sales of more than $US1.53 billion, more than 1,100 restaurants and bakeries, and approximately 13,400 employees.
“We are thrilled to partner with a Company that shares our passion for hospitality and great food,” said Claude Bergeron, CEO of Le Duff America, Inc. “The management team will continue to be led by Jim Greco as Chief Executive Officer of Bruegger’s based upon the outstanding foundation that Jim and his team have established under Sun Capital’s ownership. The addition of Bruegger’s to our North American operations combined with our other brands, La Madeleine, Brioche Dorée and Bridor, reinforces our position in the café-bakery segment and is aligned with our multi brand strategy.”
“We are very excited to join the Groupe Le Duff family of café and bakery restaurants,” said Greco. “They are an ideal partner, and our combined expertise will help enhance Bruegger’s stable of brands and expand our concepts across North America through both company-owned and franchised bakery cafés.”
“We are pleased with the tremendous progress and growth that Bruegger’s has made under our ownership and under the leadership of Jim Greco,” said M. Steven Liff, Senior Managing Director at Sun Capital. “This transaction will allow a new owner to build on the positive momentum at Bruegger’s and continue supporting growth in the business.”
Piper Jaffray & Co. and North Point Advisors, LLC acted as financial advisors to the sellers in connection with the transaction. Kirkland & Ellis LLP acted as legal advisor to the sellers in connection with the transaction.
Lapointe Rosenstein Marchand Melancon, a Montreal based law firm, and K&L Gates LLP, a Dallas based law firm, acted as legal advisors for the buyer, Le Duff America, Inc.
Bruegger’s is a leader in the fast casual restaurant segment. With locations in 26 states, the District of Columbia and several Canadian provinces, Bruegger’s is dedicated to serving delicious, authentically made food that brings guests back again and again. Famous for genuine New York-style bagels baked fresh throughout the day, Bruegger’s also bakes an array of fresh breads on site including honey wheat and hearty white. Guests can chose a variety of menu items that include unique cream cheese flavors, breakfast sandwiches, hand-tossed salads, hearty soups, sandwiches, paninis and desserts, with a frequently changing menu reflecting seasonal and geographical specialties. Every day the neighborhood bakery features a Fair Trade CertifiedTM coffee offering from Green Mountain Coffee®. Founded in 1983, Bruegger’s is headquartered in Burlington, Vermont and supports its neighbors in every community it serves. In November 2009, Bruegger’s acquired the restaurant operations of Timothy’s Coffees of the World. For more information, please visit www.brueggers.com or become a fan on Facebook at www.facebook.com/brueggers.
About Sun Capital Partners, Inc.
Sun Capital Partners, Inc. is a leading private investment firm focused on leveraged buyouts, equity, debt, and other investments in companies that can benefit from its in–house operating professionals and experience. Sun Capital affiliates have invested in more than 260 companies worldwide with combined sales in excess of $40 billion since Sun Capital’s inception in 1995. Sun Capital has offices in Boca Raton, Los Angeles, and New York, as well as affiliates with offices in London, Paris, Frankfurt, Luxembourg, Shanghai and Shenzhen. For more information, please visit www.SunCapPart.com.
About Groupe Le Duff
Groupe Le Duff, “Le plaisir et la santé dans l’assiette”, is a global bakery and restaurant company headquartered in Rennes, France. With a presence in more than 50 countries around the world, Groupe Le Duff and its North American subsidiary, Le Duff America, Inc. operate under the brand names Ristorante del Arte, Brioche Dorée, Fournil de Pierre, La Madeleine, Au Pain Doré and Ferme des Loges. In addition to its restaurant operations, Groupe Le Duff is also a major supplier of frozen breads and pastries to the wholesale market through subsidiaries Bridor Inc., with four plants supplying Canada and the United States, and Bridor France, which supplies the French and European markets. For more information, please visit http://www.groupeleduff.com/en.