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Israel’s Aroma coffee chains to merge after 22-year split

Israeli coffee chain reportedly split by sibling rivalry in 1999 will join forces once again under the Aroma Espresso Bar Israel brand

An Aroma coffee shop in Toronto, Canada

Israeli coffee chains Aroma Israel and Aroma Tel Aviv are set to re-join forces after parting ways more than two-decades ago. Originally founded as the Aroma café chain in 1994 by brothers Yariv and Shahar Shefa, the company became two separate entities in 1999 after a disagreement between the siblings.
Both companies, however, maintained similar branding, with Aroma Israel opening 57 international locations across the US, Canada, Ukraine, and Kazakhstan.
According to Israeli media, the coffee chains will now unite under the Aroma Espresso Bar Israel brand. The merged chain is anticipated to operate 187 coffee shops in Israel and will be run by current Aroma Israel owner, Yariv Shefa.
Israel has one of the most established branded coffee shop markets in the Middle East, characterised by a strong domestic brand presence, including market leaders such as Café Joe and Cofix, that has proved difficult for international brands to navigate. Starbucks entered the market in 2001 but closed its last location in 2003, with McDonald’s operating its McCafé concept at a handful of locations.

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