With acquisition Groupe SEB expands its presence in the professional coffee industry, for which it sees global development opportunities.
Groupe SEB has acquired Wilbur Curtis, the second largest American manufacturer of professional coffee equipment.
The transaction is subject to customary regulatory clearances and is expected to be finalized in February 2019.
Founded in 1941, Wilbur Curtis manufactures and markets equipment for the preparation of hot and cold beverages, mainly filter coffee and cappuccino machines. Sustained investment and a continuous commitment to innovation have enabled Wilbur Curtis to offer many of the U.S. market’s best-in-class product offerings.
Wilbur Curtis’ sales have been increasing steadily, amounting to more than $90 million, primarily in the U.S. Major customers include coffee roasters, specialty coffee retailers, convenience stores, fast-food chains, hotels and restaurants. Wilbur Curtis has built and maintains a long-term relationship with its customers, leveraging its professional salesforce and ensuring extensive national coverage. Its high-performance production facility located in Montebello, Calif., employs 300 people.
“Following the acquisition of WMF in 2016, Groupe SEB confirms its determination to pursue expansion in the professional coffee industry, which offers great development opportunities worldwide,” said Thierry de La Tour d’Artaise, chairman and CEO of Groupe SEB. “As a specialist in filter coffee machines in the U.S., Wilbur Curtis represents for the Group -that is already present on this market with Schaerer and WMF full-automatic espresso machines- a very valuable strategic complement to its product offering and customer portfolio. As a result, Groupe SEB becomes one of the leaders in the professional coffee business in the U.S.”
As with past acquisitions, the transaction will be debt-financed and the Group will use existing credit lines.