Green Mountain Buys Van Houtte

Green Mountain Coffee Roasters acquired LJVH Holdings, the parent company of Canadian gourmet coffee brand Van Houtte, for $890 million. The deal was announced Sept. 14 in Green Mountain’s filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Montreal-based Van Houtte, a Keurig licensee since 2001, does about $433 million annual sales. In addition to Van Houtte, the company’s brands are Brûlerie St. Denis, Les Cafés Orient Express Coffee and Brûlerie Mont Royal.

Green Mountain is having a stellar 2010 year-to-date, according to its third-quarter filing. For the first 39 weeks of its fiscal year, Green Mountain’s net sales increased 70% to $985.8 million, up from $580.8 million reported for the 39 weeks ended June 27, 2009.

The direct and retail seller attributes the success to a $279.2 million increase in K-Cup net sales (up 95%), and a $106.5 million (73%) rise in Keurig brewer and accessories sales.

Green Mountain has been on a buying spree in the past calendar year. In December, it bought Diedrich Coffee, also a Keurig licensee, for about $290 million. In November, it acquired the coffee brand and wholesale operations of Timothy’s Coffees of the World for $157 million cash.

The Van Houtte deal is expected to close by the end of 2010, Green Mountain said in a statement. Gerard Geoffrion, Van Houtte’s president/CEO, has agreed to continue to lead the Van Houtte business.

Green Mountain Coffee Roasters is ranked 92nd on the 2010 MCM 100 list of multichannel merchants by 2009 direct sales.