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The Second Cup acquires Canadian coffee chain

The Second Cup parent company Aegis Brands has agreed to acquire Ottawa-based Bridgehead Coffee. This marks the company’s first acquisition since it announced its new operating structure and strategy in November.

“We created Aegis with the vision of building a portfolio of amazing brands that can grow and flourish with access to our resources and expertise,” says Steven Pelton, CEO of Aegis Brands.

“Bridgehead is the quintessential ‘amazing brand’ - a company with a deep sense of purpose, strong roots in its community and an incredible potential for growth. We’re so excited to work with the team at Bridgehead to help fuel that growth in the months and years to come.”

Bridgehead has 19 coffeehouses in Ottawa, Danada, including its roastery. Aegis Brands says each location is corporately owned and consistently deliver strong financial results. They will continue to operate under the Bridgehead name following the acquisition.

“We have long had a goal of being the biggest little coffee company,” says Tracey Clark, President and CEO of Bridgehead since 2000.

“Joining Aegis gives us access to the resources to expand our footprint without needing to change who we are or what we do best: advocating for small scale farmers, offering coffee that is well-sourced, well-roasted and well-served, creating a sense of belonging for our customers and employees, and fostering community connections.”

Subject to customary closing conditions, Aegis will pay $9.5 million (about US$7.2 million) at closing, of which $6 million is cash and $3.5 million is payable in Second Cup shares.

Bridgehead Chef Operating Officer Kate Burnett will assume executive leadership of the company while Tracey Clark will continue in a new role as Chief Culture Officer. Ian Clark, Director of Coffee, and Cliff Hansen, the company’s Roastmaster, will continue in their roles.

Bridgehead’s head office will remain in Ottawa.

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