The investment firm that owns Krispy Kreme, Caribou Coffee and other enterprises, is purchasing the Panera Bread.
The deal with JAB Holding is valued at around $7.5 billion, Panera said Wednesday.
If the transaction is finalized in the third quarter of 2017 as planned, Panera would be privately held.
Panera says its board of directors has unanimously approved the definitive merger agreement with JAB.
Panera has seen exceptional growth since the early 1990s, when it was created by the founders of Au Bon Pain. Louis Kane and Ron Shaich had purchased the 20-store Saint Louis Bread Company and then changed the concept and name to Panera. They eventually sold off Au Bon Pain to focus on Panera.
The bread-centric café chain says it now has more than 2,000 locations, some $5 billion in sales, and more than 100,000 employees.
Full Content: CNN
Want more news? Subscribe to CPI’s free daily newsletter for more headlines and updates on antitrust developments around the world.