Global consumer goods behemoth, Mars, has acquired Utah-based chocolate maker Trü Frü after the brand grew its retail revenue by 104.3% year-over-year as of October 2022, reaching nearly $84 million, Spins showed. The company has also grown its annual revenues across natural and convenience by 58.7% and 82%, respectively.
The acquisition, expected to close in Q1 2023, was announced at a time when major strategic deals in the food and beverage space are rare. Mars declined to comment on financial details.
Wells Fargo Securities served as Mars’ financial advisor, and Simpson Thacher acted as Mars’ legal advisor. Houlihan Lokey
Trü Frü, which offers a line of flash dried whole fruits such as raspberries, strawberries, and cherries covered by chocolate, is expected to complement Mars’ growing health and wellness portfolio, which includes KIND, a nut-based snacking leader, and Nature’s Bakery. The brand, which employs about 50 workers, will continue operating as a standalone business led by current CEO, Brian Neville.
“We are delighted to be joining the Mars family of brands,” Neville said in a statement. “From the first moment we met the Mars team, we realized they were the right long-term partner for the company we had founded and invested so much of our time and energy in. They share our passion for healthier snacking, respect and admire the values that have made us successful, and have the capabilities we need to take our company to next level.”
Andrew Clarke, Global President Mars Snacking, added: “We are thrilled to welcome one of the most innovative fruit-based snacks in the U.S. into the Mars family of brands. Trü Frü is a perfect complementary fit for our health & wellness portfolio and our capabilities will help the brand strengthen its operations, broaden distribution and accelerate growth. We want to be the preferred home for emerging and founder-led brands like Trü Frü. We are looking forward to working with the founders and the whole Trü Frü team to help them continue their long-term growth journey and bring the brand to even more people.”