News Column

Starbucks Acquires Teavana Business

Jan. 1, 2013

Melissa Allison

Starbucks closed its acquisition of the tea chain Teavana on Monday.

It paid about $620 million in cash, as previously announced, and expects the chain of 300 mall-based tea stores to add a penny-per-share to earnings in fiscal 2013.

The deal was cash-rich Starbucks' third acquisition in the past year and a half.

The company paid $30 million last fall for a California juicery called Evolution Juice and $100 million in June for a small bakery chain called La Boulange.

Some investors worry that the acquisitions are creating too much complexity for Starbucks to manage.

David Tarantino, an analyst at Robert W. Baird & Co., wrote in a recent research note to investors that he has reservations about the Teavana deal "given the potential for increased operating complexity.'

But he was reassured at Starbucks' "investor day" in New York in early December by executives who said they are "unlikely to pursue another acquisition in the short term."

"We are glad that Starbucks intends to be patient in its approach of future acquisitions, as we believe management has enough on its plate at this stage," Tarantino wrote.

Less than a month after the investor day, Starbucks made a bid for about half of Tully's Coffee's 47 stores, sources said. It will be among seven bidders at an auction Thursday for Tully's, which is operating under bankruptcy protection.

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Distributed by MCT Information Services



Source: (c) 2012 The Seattle Times


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