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Cott Sheds S&D Coffee & Tea to Westrock Coffee for $405M

January 31, 2020
Cott sold its S&D Coffee and Tea business to Westrock Coffee. Image courtesy of Pixabay
Cott sold its S&D Coffee and Tea business to Westrock Coffee. Image courtesy of Pixabay

Foodservice and beverage solutions provider Cott Corporation entered into an agreement this week to divest from its S&D Coffee and Tea business to Westrock Coffee Company for $405 million as it pivots toward becoming “a pure-play water solutions provider,” the two firms announced in separate press releases Friday. 

Founded in the U.S. in 1927, S&D offers custom coffee roasting services, extracts, ingredients, and iced tea blends for foodservice and convenience stores. 

“The combination of the sale of S&D, along with the recent announcement of Cott’s acquisition of Primo Water Corporation, positions Cott to be a pure-play water solutions provider with financial metrics more in line with our water peers,” the company’s chief executive officer, Tom Harrington, said in a statement. 

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Under the new ownership, the company will have 1700 employees across its global footprint and package 200 million lb/yr of coffee, according to Westrock Coffee. S&D’s operations will remain in Concord, NC. 

“This strategic combination will create the nation’s premier coffee, tea, and extract supplier that is capable of serving the most complex and demanding customers across the country and the world,” said Westrock Coffee Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer Scott Ford in his firm’s release. “We intend to use the scale of the new company to offer the most innovative beverage solutions with competitive pricing to our global clients 

Westrock Coffee and Cott anticipate that the deal will close in the first quarter of this year.

The news comes on the heels of Unilever’s announcement that it has launched a strategic review of its global tea business amid an on-going slump in black tea sales in developed countries. The business includes iconic brands like Lipton and PG Tips. 

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