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JAB Goes After Lunch Crowd With $7.2 Billion Panera Takeover

  • Investment firm pushes beyond coffee empire with deal
  • JAB had already scooped Krispy Kreme, Peet’s and Keurig
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JAB to Acquire Panera in $7.5 Billion Deal

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JAB Holding Co., the sprawling investment firm that owns Krispy Kreme and Keurig Green Mountain, agreed to buy Panera Bread Co. for about $7.2 billion, adding a bakery-cafe chain to a food empire that spans coffee, bagels and doughnuts.

The deal vaults JAB into the fast-casual restaurant market -- a category that touts fresher ingredients and includes the likes of Chipotle Mexican Grill Inc. and Shake Shack Inc. It also gives the firm access to lunch and dinner crowds, which its current roster of brands doesn’t reach as well.