The Campbell Soup Company has completed its $6.1 billion acquisition of Snyder's-Lance, giving it brands such as Kettle crisps, Snyder's pretzels and Pop Secret popcorn.
The deal, which was first announced in December 2017, will allow the soup company to expand further into the snack-food segment.
With the transaction finalised, Campbell has announced plans to create a new business unit in the US – Campbell Snacks – which will be led by Carlos Abrams-Rivera, the former president of Campbell's US Biscuits and Snacks.
The unit will combine the newly acquired Snyder's-Lance brands with Campbell's Pepperidge Farm biscuit and cracker business.
"Snyder's-Lance represents a strategic and transformative acquisition for Campbell, creating a $10 billion company with nearly half of our annual net sales in the faster-growing snacks category," said Denise Morrison, Campbell’s president and chief executive officer.
"The combination of Campbell and Snyder's-Lance creates a unique, diversified snacking portfolio of differentiated brands and a large variety of better-for-you snacks for consumers," Morrison added.
Campbell will be hoping that a push into salty snacks will help reignite slow sales. Last month, the company reported that soup sales had dropped by 7% in the US, while sales of Goldfish crackers continue to boost results.
Campbell's global baked-snacks portfolio, which includes its Pepperidge Farm and Kelsen businesses, generated approximately $2.5 billion in net sales in 2017, representing 32% of total sales.
The company says that with the addition of Snyder's-Lance, which reported sales of $2.2 billion last year, the snacking segment will now represent around 47% of the group's annual net sales.
Campbell says that it will "discuss the impact" of the deal on its fiscal 2018 guidance when the company reports its third-quarter earnings on 18 May.
The group is not the only major US food company pursuing this growth strategy. In the same week that Campbell announced its deal with Snyder's-Lance, confectionery giant Hershey revealed plans to acquire Amplify Snack Brands in a move away from sweet snacks.
© 2018 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest retail news. Article by Sarah Harford. Click subscribe to sign up to ESM: The European Supermarket Magazine.