Caffè Nero Group has bought a majority stake in the Coffee#1 chain.
Brewery and hospitality company SA Brain will retain a 30% share of Coffee#1, with Caffè Nero Group holding close to 70% ownership.
Launched in 2001, Coffee#1 was acquired by SA Brain 10 years later and has grown to 92 sites selling beverages and a range of baked goods, including sourdough wraps, croissants, ciabattas and pastries.
With sites in Wales, the Midlands and southern England, it has an annual turnover of around £30m.
Coffee#1 will sit alongside other Caffè Nero Group brands, including Caffè Nero, Harris+Hoole and Aroma. The group, which has more than 750 stores in the UK, plans to leave the Coffee#1 brand intact and to operate it as a standalone business.
“Coffee#1 is a fantastic brand with an emphasis on great coffee and service combined with a local community-based feel which matches perfectly the ethos of The Caffè Nero Group,” said Caffè Nero founder and group CEO Gerry Ford.
SA Brain chairman John Rhys stated he was proud of what the business had achieved in growing Coffee#1 to 92 stores.
“The board has resolved that now is the time to join up with a major player in the coffee market to take it forward to the next stage of its development. As ongoing significant shareholders in the business, we look forward to seeing Coffee#1 continue to grow and prosper.”