Who Owns Krispy Kreme and Can You Invest in the Doughnut Company?

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Mar. 14 2022, Published 1:52 p.m. ET

Krispy Kreme was founded in 1937 with a single shop in North Carolina. The company has since spread globally. Krispy Kreme is among the most popular doughnut companies in the U.S. Who owns Krispy Kreme and can you also invest in the company?

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Vernon Rudolph founded Krispy Kreme in 1937 after he bought a secret recipe for doughnuts from a New Orleans French chef. Initially, he sold the doughnuts to local groceries before he started offering them to customers directly.

Krispy Kreme has changed hands several times.

There have been several ownership changes at Krispy Kreme since it was founded. In 1976, which was three years after Rudolph’s death, Beatrice Foods Company brought Krispy Kreme, but the association didn't last long.

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In 1982, a group of Krispy Kreme’s early franchises brought the company from Beatrice Foods Company. The company remained a privately-held company until April 2000 when it came up with an IPO. It started to trade under the ticker symbol “KREM” on the Nasdaq. However, the next year, it shifted the listing to NYSE and changed the ticker symbol to “KKD.”

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Krispy Kreme first went public in 2000.

Krispy Kreme went public in 2000 and was a publicly-traded company until 2016. That year, JAB Holding, a German company, brought Krispy Kreme for $1.35 billion and took it private.

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Krispy Kreme went public again in 2021.

2021 was a record year for the U.S. IPO market and JAB Holdings couldn't escape the lure of taking the company public again. However, the IPO didn't go smoothly and Krispy Kreme had to lower the IPO price to $17. The stock opened lower on listing day before eventually gaining 24 percent from the IPO price.

Krispy Kreme is now a publicly-traded company and trades under the ticker symbol “DNUT.” You can invest in the company through any of the stockbrokers. Krispy Kreme stock has also borne the brunt of the broader market sell-off and the stock has fallen below the IPO price. That’s hardly a surprise since most of the companies that went public in 2021 trade below the IPO price.

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Who owns Krispy Kreme now?

While JAB Holdings took Krispy Kreme public, it's still the largest stockholder in the company and holds a 44.77 percent stake. JAB Holdings is owned by Germany’s The Reimann family. While the family is the second-richest family in the country, it has a Nazi past. The group also owns several other brands like Pret a Manger and Panera Bread.

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BDT Capital Partners is the second-largest stockholder with an 8.55 percent stake. Baron Capital Management is the third-largest stockholder with a 1.9 percent stake. Vanguard and Stanford Management Company are the other two top investors and they hold 1.31 percent and 1.27 percent stakes, respectively, in the company.

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Looking at the consolidated ownership compiled by Fidelity, insiders own a 49.1 percent stake in the company. Retail investors hold a 26.1 percent stake while institutional investors hold the remaining stake.

Is DNUT stock a good buy?

DNUT stock has fallen amid the broader market weakness. However, if you're a long-term investor, the fall looks like a good buying opportunity. While there are short-term headwinds like rising inflation and the broader market weakness, the stock looks like a good long-term investment opportunity.

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