Blue Apron, one of the pioneering meal kit companies, has agreed to be acquired by restaurant home delivery company Wonder Group for $13 a share, or a total price of about $103 million. That’s a 137% premium over Blue Apron’s Sept. 28 closing price and a 77% premium to its 30-day average. Its 52-week low was $4.70 a share.
Wonder Group was created in 2018 by entrepreneur Marc Lore, who formerly headed Walmart’s e-commerce division. The company began by offering home delivery from food trucks and famous restaurants in the New York City area, especially those from celebrity chefs like Bobby Flay and Jose Andres.
“Wonder’s acquisition of Blue Apron is expected to create a leading platform for mealtime, enhancing mealtime with choice, flexibility and convenience through two exceptional brands,” today’s announcement said. “The combination is expected to enhance both companies’ abilities to deliver chef-curated meals with high-quality ingredients to more customers across the country.”
Wonder plans to continue Blue Apron’s current operations serving customers nationwide under the Blue Apron brand, with expected new synergies between consumer-facing apps and delivery logistics.
“Wonder is creating the mealtime super app, serving a broad range of occasions that feature cuisines from some of the world’s best chefs and restaurants while leveraging our culinary engineering and vertically-integrated model,” said Lore. “At-home meals play a key role in this vision and have been on our strategic roadmap since the beginning.”
Blue Apron, founded in 2017, flourished during the pandemic but has foundered since. It sold most of its physical assets this June to FreshRealm, which delivers meal kits from retailers. Last December, Blue Apron cut 10% of its corporate staff and also received a delisting notice from the Nasdaq stock exchange for not meeting the exchange’s minimum-listing requirements.
The transaction is expected to close in the fourth quarter of 2023. FreshRealm, which beneficially owns approximately 16.5% of Blue Apron’s outstanding shares of Class A common stock, has agreed to the deal.