Blue Bottle Coffee is sending a jolt through the artisanal coffee industry.
The Oakland, California-based company revealed Thursday it was raising a new $70 million round of funding, led by Fidelity Management and Research. Previous investors Index Ventures, True Ventures, and Google Ventures also participated in the round. In total, the company has raised $45.7 million and plans to use the new funds to fuel its international growth.
The news follows Blue Bottle's acquisition of Tartine, a San Francisco-based artisanal bakery, in April and the company's expansion into Japan last year. The roastery has been carefully curating select new locations for its cafes and now counts 19 locations—spread across the Bay Area, New York City, Los Angeles and Tokyo—in its unique family.
James Freeman, Blue Bottle’s founder and chief executive, told the Financial Times that instead of distributing the company's beans wholesale, he was focusing on the company’s own retail stores. "Retail is expensive but retail is rewarding if you get it right,” he said.
Published — June 5, 2015