Panera Bread plans IPO with backing from Shake Shack founder Danny Meyer’s SPAC (update)

Nov. 09, 2021 9:39 AM ETUSHG Acquisition Corp. (HUGS)SHAK, KDP, DNUTBy: Jerry Kronenberg, SA News Editor42 Comments

Panera Bread To Eliminate Artificial Food Additives By 2016

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  • Popular fast-casual restaurant operator Panera Brands announced plans Tuesday for an IPO that will include a major investment from Shake Shack founder Danny Meyer and his SPAC USHG Acquisition Corp. (NYSE:HUGS), which rose some 9% on the news.
  • The parties said Panera plans to file for a traditional initial public offering, with Meyer making a personal investment in the newly public company and his special purpose acquisition company USHG Acquisition Corp. (HUGS) buying into the deal.

  • The SPAC will exchange all of its roughly $285M of cash for Panera stock, less any redemptions from shareholders who don’t want to participate in the deal.

  • HUGS rose as much as 11.5% on the news to an intraday record $10.94, although the stock later pulled back to close at $10.44, up 6.4% for the session.

  • Plans call for privately held European investment company JAB, which took Panera private in 2017 at about a $7.2B valuation, to continue to own a significant stake in the chain following the IPO.

  • The parties didn’t say what exchange Panera will list on, nor what ticker symbol it will trade under.

  • Panera operates nearly 4,000 fast-casual restaurants in 10 countries under the names Panera Bread, Caribou Coffee, Einstein Bros. Bagels, Bruegger's Bagels and other brands.

  • Meyer, who founded Shake Shack (NYSE:SHAK) and such iconic New York City restaurants as Union Square Cafe and the Gramercy Tavern, said in announcing the deal that Panera “meets our investment criteria to combine with a purpose-driven business that is scalable and built for the long-term; a market leader whose greatest strength is its talent and heart.”

  • Panera CEO Niren Chaudhary said his team has “long admired Danny’s work as he built some of today’s most beloved brands with a relentless focus on hospitality and culture.”

  • JAB Senior Partner David Bell added that the deal will unit “two of the world’s leading hospitality organizations to work together on a successful transaction.”

  • JAB is a major investor in several publicly and privately held consumer brands, from Keurig Dr Pepper (NASDAQ:KDP) to Krispy Kreme Inc. (NASDAQ:DNUT).

  • For more IPO news, click here.

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