SEATTLE — Starbucks has entered into a definitive agreement to sell the assets of its Tazo brand — including signature recipes, intellectual property and inventory — to Unilever for $384 million.
According to a company press release, the move will allow Starbucks to focus solely on Teavana.
“Over the past five years, we have established Teavana as our primary global brand focused on the premium-tea segment,” says Kevin Johnson, Starbucks president and CEO. “We continue to see significant growth in our tea business through our Teavana brand and this transition supports our strategy to elevate the premium-tea experience for our customers.”
Starbucks purchased Tazo for $8.1 million in 1999 and has since developed it into an iconic brand, especially in the retail sector where it’s commonly found on grocery shelves.
The deal is expected to close during the fourth calendar quarter of 2017, with the complete transition taking place by the end of calendar year 2018.