US-based confectionery, food, and beverage company Mondelez International said that it agreed to acquire Greece-based Chipita, a major producer of croissants and baked snacks active in Central and Eastern Europe, for some $2 billion (1.6 billion euro).
Mondelez plans to finance the acquisition, which is subject to certain closing purchase price adjustments, through a combination of new debt issuance and existing cash, it said in a statement on Wednesday.
The deal is subject to relevant antitrust approvals and closing conditions.
The acquisition of Chipita, one of the largest producers of salty and sweet snacks in CEE, will advance Mondelez' strategy to become the global leader in broader snacking, Dirk Van de Put, chairman and CEO of the US company said in the statement. "Their iconic brands and significant scale across so many attractive geographies make them a strong strategic complement to our existing portfolio and future growth ambitions in Europe and beyond," he added.
Chipita, which has a portfolio of brands including 7Days, Chipicao, and Fineti, generated approximately $580 million of revenue in 2020, according to the statement.
In addition to bringing a new category to Mondelez, the acquisition will also offer significantly increased presence in the fast-growing CEE markets where Chipita’s business is especially well-positioned. Mondelez will utilize Chipita’s CEE distribution network capabilities to enhance its own distribution in the region and continue to bring its brands to new countries in the region and beyond, the buyer said.
Chipita, based in the Greek capital Athens, has been operating outside Greece since 1996 by setting up manufacturing plants in Bulgaria, Poland, Romania, Russia and Saudi Arabia and more recently Turkey, Malaysia, Mexico and India. During the same period, Chipita also set up commercial offices in Czech Republic, Germany, Hungary, Serbia, Slovakia, Croatia, the Baltics, Georgia, Ukraine, Belarus and the UK, according to information published on the company's LinkedIn profile.
The Greek food maker employs over 5,800 people and offers its products in 56 countries, either directly or through strategic partnerships.