July 21, 2023
Philly's biggest coffee roaster is about to get even bigger.
La Colombe is receiving a $300 million dollar investment from Keurig Dr Pepper in a deal that gives the beverage giant a minority stake in the Fishtown-based premium coffee roaster. The investment values La Colombe at $900 million, according to the Philadelphia Business Journal.
As part of the deal, La Colombe will get a big boost in its reach through a new sales and distribution partnership that will put La Colombe ready-to-drink coffee on more store shelves. Keurig also will produce and sell new La Colombe-branded K-cup coffee pods for its single-serve coffee brewing machines. The La Colombe K-cups are expected to be available sometime in 2024.
"This partnership will enable KDP to expand its reach into high growth ready-to-drink and super premium coffee segments and will meaningfully increase La Colombe's availability to consumers," Keurig Dr Pepper CEO Bob Gamgort said in a press release.
For La Colombe, an independent coffee roaster with its flagship store on Frankford Avenue, the impact on its footprint and brand familiarity could be massive. As a publicly-traded, multinational company valued at $44 billion, Keurig Dr Pepper has an extensive retail distribution network that could help the La Colombe brand find its way to a bigger and more mainstream swath of consumers.
Founded by Todd Carmichael and J.P. Iberti in 1994, La Colombe opened its first coffee shop near Rittenhouse Square. In 2014, the company opened its sprawling, 11,00-square-foot flagship location – which includes a coffee bar, rum distillery and on-site bakery – in a former warehouse in Fishtown. La Colombe now operates 32 cafes across multiple cities.
La Colombe started selling a canned version of its popular Draft Latte in 2016. The company now produces several canned, ready-to-drink lattes and cold brews, which are likely to be the focus of its new distribution deal with Keurig.