The family that owns the food brand Krispy Kreme is trying to right some historical wrongs.
The Reimanns—who also own Panera Bread—announced on Thursday that they will donate over $5.5 million to Claims Conference, an organization that provides remuneration to Holocaust survivors. The donation will be dispensed through the family’s new Alfred Landecker Foundation over the next three years.
After a three-year investigation, the family found out in March that family members had deep attachments to anti-Semitism. A family spokesperson shared that Albert Reimann Sr., who died in 1954, and Albert Reimann Jr., who died in 1984, forced Russian civilian prisoners and French prisoners of war to work in their factories during WWII. A plant run by Reimann Jr. used 200 civilians as forced laborers in 1942.
The investigation also discovered that they were anti-Semites and professed advocators of Adolf Hitler: Reimann Sr. donated to Hitler’s paramilitary SS force as early as 1931. Investigators found a letter from Reimann Jr. to a local mayor where Jr. lamented that the French POWs weren’t working hard enough and should be sent to prison.
The family previously labeled the crimes as “disgusting” and “nothing to gloss over.”
The $5.5 million donation is part of a bigger $11 million pledge from the family to Holocaust survivors. The foundation’s namesake, Alfred Landecker was killed by the Nazis and linked to the Reimann family. The Reimanns chose to use his name to “not only preserve his memory, but also memorialize the murder of millions of Jews and other victims of National Socialism,” per CNN.
The Reimann family has a controlling stake in Luxembourg-based JAB Holdings, which owns Peet’s Coffee, Pret a Manger, Einstein’s Bagels, and Coty. The Reimanns are allegedly one of the richest families in Germany.