Starbucks Sells Tazo But Wants To Continue Investing in Tea Business

Tazo passion tea

Looks like Starbucks will only have one tea brand to worry about now.

On Thursday, the coffee giant announced that it is selling the Tazo brand to Unilever for $384 million.

The transaction will include all Tazo recipes, intellectual property and inventory.

Starbucks had purchased the then five-year-old tea brand in 1999 for $8.1 million. That’s a significant boost of income for America’s coffee darling.

This leaves Teavana as the only tea brand Starbucks will manage.

The news come after the Seattle-based brand announced, back in July, plans to close over 350 Teavana stores by spring 2018. However, just because stores are to shut down, it doesn’t mean the company doesn’t want to continue investing in the tea business.

“Over the past five years, we have established Teavana as our primary global brand focused on the premium tea segment,” said Kevin Johnson, president and chief executive officer of Starbucks in a statement. “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.”

A press release, reveals the company has sold more than $1.6B of Teavana beverages in Starbucks stores and by 2018 the coffee giant plans to enter the packaged tea category.

Read more about Starbucks