Hormel Foods Corp. (NYSE:HRL), the maker of Spam meats and Dinty Moore soups, will pay Anglo-Dutch conglomerate Unilever PLC (LON:ULVR) about $700 million for its iconic Skippy peanut butter brand.
The brand, introduced in the U.S. in 1932, brings Unilever, which owns the Dove soap and Ben & Jerry’s ice cream brands, about $370 million a year in sales, with about $100 million of that outside the U.S.
Skippy is the No. 2 peanut butter brand in the U.S. with an 18 percent market share, according to Bloomberg News. Rival J.M. Smucker leads the sector with a 34 percent market share.
Unilever sold its North American frozen meals business to ConAgra Foods, Inc. (NYSE:CAG) in August 2012 for $267 million.
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"The acquisition of the Skippy peanut butter business represents a significant opportunity for Hormel Foods. It allows us to grow our branded presence in the center of the store with a non-meat protein product and it reinforces our balanced portfolio,” Jeffrey M. Ettinger, Hormel's CEO, said in a statement.
“The fast growing international line will also strengthen our global presence and should be a useful complement to our sales strategy in China for the SPAM family of products."