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JAB goals to lift $8bn to additional shopper deal spree

JAB Holdings, the investment company behind brands including Keurig Dr Pepper and sandwich chain Pret A Manger, aims to raise as much as $8bn from investors to further its multiyear acquisition spree in the consumer sector.

The firm, which manages the fortune of Germany’s billionaire Reimann family, has begun contacting investors including family offices, university endowments and sovereign wealth funds about its latest fundraising, three people informed on the plans said. The cash will go into the JAB Consumer Fund, which was founded in 2014 to invest alongside the holding company, adding firepower to the family’s money.

JAB declined to comment.

The fresh infusion will be used to expand JAB’s presence in pet care and veterinary clinics, two of the people added. The market is the latest focus of JAB’s consolidation efforts in the consumer sector, where it has already deployed more than $50bn to buy businesses in coffee, beverages, cosmetics and quick service restaurant in the past decade.

Already this year, JAB has bought Compassion-First Pet Hospitals for $1.2bn and a majority stake in National Veterinary Associates in a deal valuing the business at around $3.5bn.

The fundraising effort is the latest sign that JAB is attempting to move on after a tumultuous period. In January, Bart Becht, one of its three managing partners quit after disagreements about the pace of deal making and the way operations were overseen at businesses JAB owns.

The Luxembourg-based investment company was further rocked in March when the Reimann family was forced to admit that its businesses abused slave labour during the second world war and that the family patriarch and his son were both enthusiastic supporters of the Nazi party.

In response to the fallout and questions from investors, the Reimanns promised a €10m charity donation and later repurposed and renamed the family foundation to fund projects commemorating victims of the Holocaust and promoting democracy.

Created to deploy the Reimanns’ wealth, JAB has been expanding rapidly since 2014 when it began raising money from outside investors. At that time, managing partner Peter Harf, who has been a confidante of the Reimanns for decades, decided more firepower was needed as JAB sought to diversify and expand into the coffee business.

Mr Harf brought in two partners: Mr Becht, the former chief executive of Reckitt Benckiser, and Olivier Goudet, an experienced executive from Mars, to lead JAB on its deal spree.

Since then, the JAB Consumer Fund has raised a total of $11.4bn in three fundraising rounds, from outside investors including Singapore’s sovereign funds GIC and Temasek, as well wealthy families including tech tycoons, the Hewletts and the Packards. The latest fundraising is the fourth time JAB has turned to outside investors to raise money for consumer industry deals.

JAB recently recruited David Kamenetzky, a former executive at Anheuser-Busch InBev, to serve as chairman and liaise between the Reimanns and JAB’s managing partners.

His wife Anna-Lena Kamenetzky is also a partner at JAB, and sits on the boards of several of its businesses, such as cosmetics maker Coty and Keurig Dr Pepper.

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