St. Louis Park Caribou Coffee locations are not among the more than 150 slated for closure across the nation.
A source with knowledge of the company’s downsizing plans and speaking on the condition of anonymity said 80 stores are being outright closed and 80 others are being converted into Peet’s Coffee locations. Two Minnesota locations in Minneapolis—the Rand Tower store and a shop on the corner of 53rd Avenue and Lyndale Avenue South—are on the chopping block, according to the source, and are scheduled to close next week.
“The rest of the Twin Cities stores are safe for now,” the source said, adding that most of the 160 affected stores are in Ohio, Atlanta and Michigan.
Click here to see a list of St. Louis Park Caribou Coffee locations.
The source said severance packages are being offered to employees of the stores slated for closure and will be based on the average number of hours worked over the last four weeks and time with the company.
News of the Caribou closings has been leaking out since a company conference call Friday morning, but no official statement has so far been issued by the company. E-mails to corporate headquarters had not yet been returned as of this posting.
Statement on Facebook
On Friday Caribou responded to an Iowa customer's Facebook query with this statement:
Hi Rikki, retail locations in Iowa will remain operating, as well as retail locations in Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota, Western Wisconsin, North Carolina, Kansas and Denver. Closing stores outside of these areas was a tough decision. However, we’re excited to be able to renew our efforts in these markets. Please contact 888.CARIBOU with further questions - thank you for reaching out to us.
Caribous Closing in Ohio and Illinois
In Lakewood, OH a Caribou store employee told Lakewood Patch Sunday that the staff was "just told" about the closing. "We're not very happy about it," said the employee, who asked not to be named. "We're all going to lose our jobs. We're going to be given the option to reapply for a job at Peet's, but we don't know much." He said the Lakewood location is one of the stores that will be converted into a Peet's, however, he added that no timeline has been given for the change. It's expected within in couple weeks.
An employee at the said management learned on April 5 via conference call that all Ohio locations will close down, although some will re-open as a Peet’s Coffee & Tea locations.
A manager at the told Avon-Avon Lake Patch the store will close on April 14. She would not give any additional information, including whether or not the store would be reopening.
Employees in Illinois have taken to Facebook to say several of that state's locations would also close and reopen as Peet's.
German Firm Buys Caribou and Peet's
Caribou Coffee, headquartered in Brooklyn Center, MN, is the second-largest java chain in the United States behind Starbucks. In December 2012, German conglomerate Joh. A. Benckiser Group said it would be buying the publicly traded Minneapolis-based Caribou Coffee Co. for $340 million.
Earlier in 2012 it bought Peet’s Coffee & Tea for $1 billion. Peet’s Coffee was founded in Berkeley, CA, and is now headquartered in Emeryville, CA. The bulk of its stores are located in California. The company also maintains stores in Colorado, Illinois, Massachusetts, Oregon and Washington state.
In March, Caribou opted not to go ahead with plans to put shops inside J.C. Penney stores, according to Bloomberg.