R&R, owned by funds controlled by PAI Partners, and Nestlé are in advanced discussions to set up a new joint venture covering ice cream based mainly in Europe and Africa.
The proposed joint venture will capitalise on the complementary strengths and innovation expertise of the two companies. It will combine Nestlé’s strong and successful brands and experience in ‘out-of-home’ distribution with R&R’s competitive manufacturing model and significant presence in retail.
R&R CEO, Ibrahim Najafi commented:
“We are pleased to be in talks with Nestlé and building on our 14 year history working together. We are excited about combining the respective talents of R&R and Nestlé’s people to drive further growth in this category. The vision of the proposed joint venture is to grow a unique consumer and customer focused ice cream business serving all channels, delivering innovative, high quality ice cream through investment in people, process and products. The ambition of the proposed joint venture will be to sell more ice cream through meeting and exceeding customer and consumer needs.”
R&R will join the new proposed joint venture in its entirety. Nestlé will contribute its ice cream businesses in Europe, Egypt, the Philippines, Brazil and Argentina to the new proposed joint venture. It will also transfer its European frozen food businesses, excluding pizza. This combination will give the proposed joint venture a presence in both developed and emerging markets across the northern and southern hemispheres in complementary channels.
Following conclusion of the talks, employee consultations and subject to approval from regulatory authorities, the new arrangements will be implemented in the course of 2016. Each partner will own an equal share of the new joint venture which will operate in more than 20 countries and employ more than 10,000 people. It is intended that the new proposed joint venture will be led by Luis Cantarell, current Nestlé Executive Vice President Europe, Middle East and North Africa, as Chairman and Ibrahim Najafi as CEO. The supervisory board will be composed from both Nestlé and PAI Partners, in equal proportions.
R&R and Nestlé have worked together successfully for the past 14 years, initially in the UK and Ireland and, more recently, in Australia and South Africa where R&R licences Nestlé brands. We are excited about the prospect of this transaction though in the meantime, it is business as usual for R&R. We have made good progress with the integration of Peters and Nestlé’s South African business and intend to continue to maintain our rigorous focus on delivering above and beyond.
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