Strauss-Elite signed a cooperation agreement with Douwe Egberts to distribute the Dutch coffee maker's Cafitesse coffee machines in Israel in a move to expand the group's coffee-to-go operations. Strauss-Elite bought the distribution permit for NIS 11 million from Interpreq, the previous distribution holder in Israel. Over the next five years, Strauss-Elite will be committed to paying another NIS 4.5m., subject to sales targets determined in the agreement. Under the agreement Strauss-Elite expects to spend NIS 400,000 on the purchase of coffee machines in 2006 from Douwe Egberts, which is part of Chicago-based Sara Lee, the US food and clothing group. "This is a strategic move to expand our coffee activity in Israel and to join up with a global company such as Sara Lee. A co-operation which might open up the door for future opportunities," said Strauss-Elite. In 2005, Cafitesse operations generated NIS 12m. in sales from 1,400 coffee machines supplying 35 million coffee cups. Under the terms of the deal, Interpreq will continue to provide the technical services for Cafitesse machines. The co-operation agreement will provide better solutions for Strauss-Elite's Away-From-Home, or AFH, market operations such as Strauss-Elite's Coffee-to-go chain, which specializes in coffee carts and espresso-bar stalls with around 50 points of sale nationwide selling the Elite coffee brand. The Elite coffee brand is placed countrywide in locations such as office buildings, public buildings, schools of higher education.