Costa Coffee buys out south China partner Yueda

British high-street chain Costa Coffee has taken full ownership of its south China business after buying out partner Yueda.

Costa previously held 51 per cent of their JV, buying the balance of shares for RMB310 million (US$47 million), giving it total control of 252 stores.

The deal is part of the group’s plans to expand overseas, says Alison Brittain, chief executive of Costa’s parent company Whitbread.

“We have enjoyed an excellent partnership with Yueda over the past 10 years, together beginning to build the Costa brand in this key market,” says Brittain. “The coffee shop market in China is highly attractive, with a compelling opportunity for Costa to grow its presence over the longer term.

“This acquisition gives us full strategic and funding flexibility to unlock Costa’s potential in China.”

Meanwhile, the company says it remains fully committed to its partnership with BHG in northern China.

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