Caribou history

  • Updated: December 17, 2012 - 9:30 PM

 

1992: Newlyweds John and Kim Puckett, freshly minted MBAs, have the vision for a gourmet coffee company while hoofing around Alaska's Denali Park.

1993: The Pucketts raise the first few dollars of what will become $40 million and open Caribou shops in the Twin Cities.

1996: Board members express concern about systems and operating problems.

1997: Jay Willoughby, an operations expert, joins the company as president from Pepsico Restaurants.

1998: Growth halted at around 90 stores as operating issues are addressed.

1999: McDonald's veteran Don Dempsey succeeds the Pucketts as chairman and chief executive.

2000: Caribou sells 70 percent stake to Crescent Capital of Atlanta for about $75 million.

2003: Dempsey leaves because of disagreements over how quickly to grow the company.

2004: Hoping to ignite growth, Caribou hires Michael Coles as CEO. Coles and a partner had founded the Great American Cookie Co., built it into a chain of nearly 400 stores before selling in 1998 to the corporate parent of Mrs. Fields.

2005: Caribou goes public, raising $75 million at $14 per share.

2007: After several money-losing years, Coles leaves the company; president and COO Rosalyn Mallet takes over as interim CEO.

2008: Mike Tattersfield, a veteran executive of Yum Brands Inc., named CEO. Tattersfield closes some stores and focuses on increasing commercial sales, franchise fees and royalties. Stock hits its low point of $1.32 on Nov. 21, amid the global financial crisis. Company shows a profit in 2009.

2010: Caribou Coffee launches a major rebranding that ranges from the subtle -- brown cup covers -- to the sublime: a new-looking caribou logo built out of a coffee bean. The company's theme remains central -- "Life is short. Stay awake for it." The stock recovers to the $10 range.

2012: Caribou sold for $340 million to an affiliate of the Joh. A. Benckiser (JAB) Group, a privately held German holding company with investments in many retail brands.

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