- Melia Robinson/Business Insider
Nestle is buying a majority stake in Blue Bottle Coffee, an Oakland-based coffee company valued at $700 million in the deal – and Silicon Valley is rejoicing.
Why? Because since its inception in 2002, Blue Bottle Coffee had taken in over $120 million in funding from some of the tech industry’s most prominent venture investors…and some of Hollywood’s finest, to boot.
That means those investors are likely getting a nice payout with Thursday’s deal.
Here’s a brief list of some of the A-listers who are getting richer off the Blue Bottle deal.
- Instagram CEO Kevin Systrom, who invested in Blue Bottle all three times the company went after venture funding: Once each in 2012, 2014, and 2015. Evan Williams, cofounder of Twitter. “Shark Tank’s” Chris Sacca, as well as his venture firm Lowercase Capital. GV, the venture capital firm formerly known as Google Ventures. Jared Leto, of “Suicide Squad” fame, who’s actually a prolific startup investor. Bono, the frontman of U2. Pro skater Tony Hawk. Morgan Stanley.
If this list proves nothing else, it’s that the definition of a “tech company” is rapidly changing. For further evidence, look at Amazon’s purchase of the Whole Foods grocery chain.
Nestle is spending $500 million to take a 68% stake in Blue Bottle, the Financial Times reported Thursday. The deal values the 50-plus-location coffee chain and roastery at more than $700 million.
If a slow-drip pourover coffee company can qualify for this level of interest from Silicon Valley’s top investors, then either everything is a tech company, or nothing is.