Dutch coffee chains join forces for expansion


Three Dutch coffee chains are joining forces: coffee and lunch formula Doppio Espresso is taking over Chocolate Company Café and Barista Café, intending to expand internationally. Chocolate Company also has a Belgian branch.


New franchise group

Doppio Espresso currently has 25 franchise branches, and will take over Chocolate Company's 19 branches and Barista Café's 23. Of the three chains, Chocolate Company is the only one with a location beyond the Dutch borders: in the Belgian city of Leuven.


Together, the franchise formulas will continue under the new holding company Caféco. Each chain will keep its own identity, but they intend to work together behind the scenes. As a brand house for franchise formulas, Caféco's main aim is to facilitate further expansion: more takeovers are planned in the home markets and beyond.


Small coffee chains wanted

Caféco mainly looks for small chains with at least fifteen coffee or lunch branches. The group wants to double in size, Doppio Espresso founder and Caféco main shareholder Peter van Eijl told Dutch newspaper FD. Already, takeover talks are ongoing, and the brand new franchise group is eyeballing Germany.


The new joint head office is located in Joure, where employees of the three formulas will work together. There would be no enforced redundancies. Alexander de Ronde Bresser, head of Chocolate Company, will also be making the move, and will become a shareholder and a member of the Caféco board. The owners of Barista Café are selling their shares in full.