April 4, 2017 / 10:21 PM / 5 months ago

Panera Bread in advanced sale talks with JAB Holdings -source

April 4 (Reuters) - Bakery chain Panera Bread Co is in advanced talks to sell to JAB Holdings as the owner of Caribou Coffee and Peet's Coffee & Tea builds out its coffee and breakfast empire, a source familiar with the situation said on Tuesday.

A sale to JAB, which also owns Keurig Green Mountain, would help the company compete against rivals such as Dunkin Brands Group Inc.

St. Louis-based Panera has reported better-than-expected quarterly earnings per share for the last six quarters. The stock has risen nearly 28 percent this year.

Luxembourg-based JAB, the investment vehicle of the billionaire Reimann family, declined to comment. Panera also declined to comment.

Bloomberg first reported Panera was in advanced sale talks with JAB. (Reporting by Lauren Hirsch; Editing by Andrew Hay)

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