One of Germany’s richest families is coming to terms with a disturbing past. The family that owns a controlling stake in Krispy Kreme Doughnuts and Panera Bread, among others, will donate $11 million to charity after learning that their ancestors were staunch supporters of Adolf Hitler and extensively used forced labor.
The family announced its planned charitable donation after Bild newspaper published a report showing how Albert Reimann Sr. and Albert Reimann Jr. used Russian civilians and French prisoners of war as forced laborers during World War II.
The Reimann family, which has an estimated wealth of 33 billion euros, or $37 billion, did not dispute the findings of the newspaper’s report. “It is all correct,” spokesman Peter Harf told the newspaper. “Reimann senior and Reimann junior were guilty … they belonged in jail.”
Krispy Kreme was founded in North Carolina in 1937 and was acquired by the German conglomerate in 2016. JAB Holding Company also owns Peet’s Coffee, Caribou Coffee, Pret A Manger, Einstein Bros. Bagels, and Keurig Dr. Pepper, the last of which includes Snapple, 7-Up, Sunkist, and a slew of other drink brands.