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Coffee roaster acquires company's wholesale operation

November 19, 2018
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Sparrows Coffee bag
Courtesy Sparrows Coffee

A local coffee roaster has acquired part of a Grand Rapids coffee company.

Kentwood-based Schuil Coffee acquired the wholesale roasting operation of Sparrows Coffee.

Sparrows will remain its own brand, and the Sparrows café at 1035 Wealthy St. SE in Grand Rapids will remain open and independently owned and operated.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

The acquisition will allow Sparrows to increase its roasting capacity and give it access to capital.

It also provides Schuil with additional specialty coffee roasting talent and expanded coffee expertise in-house.

Lori Slager Wenzel opened the Sparrows café in 2007, and the company began roasting its own coffee for the café and local wholesale clients in 2016. 

Slager Wenzel will continue to own and operate the Sparrows café and has also joined Schuil Coffee as general manager of the Sparrows Coffee wholesale business. 

Cody Gallagher, Sparrows’ head roaster, and Tim Novak, Sparrows’ head of product development and quality assurance, have also joined the Schuil team.

“Joining the Schuil team is a natural fit,” Slager Wenzel said. “So far Cody, Tim and I have fulfilled orders for our Sparrows accounts with a super small roaster, but with access to Schuil’s green coffee sourcing partnerships and roasting technology, we can dramatically expand our reach and access new markets.”

Sparrows closed a second café at 442 Bridge St. NW in Grand Rapids in April, after being open for under a year, the Business Journal previously reported.

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