Middleby buys equipment maker for instant access to one of industry’s hottest areas

Acquisitive catering equipment manufacturer Middleby has made a play for the rapidly emerging nitro and cold brew coffee market by snapping up a company that produces specialist dispensing equipment for the commercial foodservice industry.

The US giant, which owns brands such as Pitco, Lincat and Houno, has agreed a deal to take over JoeTap, a subsidiary of A.C. Beverage, Inc. Its flagship offering includes a countertop unit that dispenses nitro and cold brew coffee at the twist of a tap.

Nitro cold brew coffee is one of the hottest trends in the market right now. Last year Starbucks introduced nitro cold brew into more than 1,000 stores domestically and dozens more worldwide and predicted that it would help drive its overall cold beverage mix from 35% of sales four years ago to nearly 50% by 2021. 

Rival coffee shop chain Costa also launched a new cold brew coffee line last year.

Selim Bassoul, CEO of The Middleby Corporation, said the takeover of JoeTap gave it access to a “recognised leader” in a market sector that is “quickly gaining momentum”.

He said: “This acquisition extends our portfolio of beverage solutions and enables Middleby to provide customers with a solution as they capitalise on the nitro brew trend. JoeTap has a patented nitrogen infusion process that will be incorporated into innovative designs providing a smaller footprint and greater operator flexibility.

“We believe there is strong growth potential as we integrate the JoeTap solution with other Middleby beverage solutions and introduce JoeTap to Middleby’s broadened base of existing customers.”

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