Israel-based SodaStream International stocks took their biggest leap in two years after daily newspaper Globes reported Starbucks Corp. is in talks to buy a 10 percent stake in the maker of home soda machines.
Shares of SodaStream soared 14 percent to $46 in New York, in a rally that cut SodaStream’s loss this year to 7.6 percent.
Starbucks, the world’s biggest coffee chain, is in advanced talks to acquire the stake at a company value of $1.1 billion, Globes reported, citing unidentified sources. An official announcement will be made soon, the paper said. Another economic newspaper, Calcalist, reported a week ago that SodaStream, which has a market value of $960 million according to data compiled by Bloomberg, was in talks to sell a stake of the company.
Jim Olson, a Starbucks spokesman, declined to comment on SodaStream. Yonah Lloyd, SodaStream’s communications officer, said the company doesn’t comment on rumors.
In February, Coca-Cola Co. agreed to buy a 10 percent stake in Keurig Green Mountain Inc., which is developing a make-your-own, single-serve product similar to SodaStream’s, for about $1.25 billion. “The announcement helped validate the do-it-yourself beverage market and fueled speculation that PepsiCo Inc., the world’s second-largest soft-drink maker after Coca-Cola, will make a bid for SodaStream,” wrote Bloomberg.
Early this year, actress Scarlett Johansson rejected demands that she cancel her advertising campaign for SodaStream, although the company operates out of Ma'ale Adumim, a Jerusalem suburb located over 1949 Armistice lines. Pressure applied by the BDS anti-Israel boycott movement failed to sway her.
"I think it was a natural partnership," she explained, in a behind-the-scenes clip for the advertisement. "I've been using Sodastream for five or six years and it's a product I found on my own."
"I like carbonated water but I hated the waste of bottles," she related. "My favorite thing about Sodastream is that I don't feel guilty when I enjoy beverages."