Diedrich Coffee Offering Nets Firm $23.3 Million

Times staff and wire reports

Diedrich Coffee Inc., the Irvine-based regional coffeehouse chain, netted $23.3 million Wednesday with a secondary offering of 4.6 million common shares priced at $6. The offering was managed by a group led by the BancBoston Robertson Stephens brokerage. Fees reduced Diedrich's proceeds to $5.06 per share.

Meanwhile, the company's Nasdaq-traded stock, which had been selling in the range of $6 to $6.75 a share over the last month, rose 38 cents Wednesday to close at $7.

The company went public in September 1996 with an initial offering of 2.2 million shares priced at $9.50. The stock has since traded as high as $11.13 and as low as $2.44.

Part of the proceeds from the new offering will be used to pay a $12.25-million cash portion of Diedrich's previously announced purchase of Coffee People Inc., a Castroville, Calif.-based specialty coffee chain. Proceeds also will be used for general corporate purposes.

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