Bell Tea and Coffee Company (BTCC) has bought Christchurch coffee roaster Hummingbird. The combined company will look to expand nationally and in Australia. It will employ 250 staff nationwide.
Bell Tea, founded in Dunedin in 1895, owns the Bell and Twinnings tea brands, as well as coffee brands Jed’s and Gravity. Hummingbird was run by the Cowper family and Hummingbird’s General Manager, Nick Cowper, said the sale was the best way for Hummingbird to expand. It had outlets in more than 160 cafes, nearly all in the South Island. The company has prided itself on customer support, including barista training and machine servicing.
Hummingbird was the first coffee company in New Zealand to import Fair Trade organic coffee back in 2002.
Cowper comments, “We are extremely proud of the brand we’ve built up over the years and have no doubt that BTCC will do a terrific job taking us to the next level. We know we offer a great brew – as does most of Christchurch – now we get to share it with the rest of country. It’s great to be a part of the next growth phase of our company and join the team at BTCC where things can only get better and all of our staff stay in place.”
Mark Hamilton, CEO of BTCC comments, “We are really excited about this announcement – there is such great synergy between the businesses, with both celebrating sustainable growth, success and great reputations over the years. BTCC and Hummingbird have a strong alignment of philosophies around ethical sourcing and making high quality coffee available for all New Zealanders to enjoy.”