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Caribou Coffee to continue in Brainerd, Baxter

Caribou Coffee patrons in the Brainerd lakes area can relax.

The coffee houses in Brainerd and Baxter are not closing, according to staff members at both locations.

Caribou Coffee, which is headquartered in Minneapolis, announced Monday it was closing 80 underperforming stores and converting another 88 stores to Peet’s Coffee and Tea sites.

Jess Chornuk, assistant manager at the Baxter Caribou, said stores in the lakes area were not affected. She said the three stores in Minnesota slated for closing are all in the southern region of the state. There are no reported conversions to Peet’s in Minnesota, but they are expected in Ohio, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Virginia, Georgia, Illinois and Wisconsin.

Chornuk said after the changes Caribou Coffee will have 468 locations. Those sites are in eight states and 10 international markets.

Caribou reported the changes are designed to better position the company for long-term growth. Store closings are expected in April.

According to the Caribou Coffee’s website, the company had nearly 500 locations in 16 states and the District of Columbia and outside the U.S. Caribou reported having more than 6,000 employees and in 2009 had $262 million in revenues.

Last year, the German investment firm Joh. A. Benckiser Group bought Caribou Coffee for $340 million moving the company from a public to a private entity.

The Joh. A. Benckiser Group also owns a majority stake in Peet’s.

This story contains information from the Associated Press.

RENEE RICHARDSON, senior reporter, may be reached at 855-5852 or Follow on Twitter at

Renee Richardson
Richardson is a Pacelli High School graduate from Austin, Minn., who earned an applied science degree from the University of Minnesota, Waseca, with an emphasis in horse management. She worked extensively in the resort industry. She received an associate’s degree from Central Lakes College, where she was editor of the Westbank Journal student newspaper, as well as a summer intern at the Dispatch. She graduated from St. Cloud State University summa cum laude with a bachelor’s degree in mass communications and interned at the St. Cloud Times covering business while attending SCSU. She's been with the Brainerd Dispatch since 1996.
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