US: Ferrero Acquires Fannie May

Ferrero has announced the acquisition of chocolatier Fannie May, in a deal worth $115m. The deal, which is subject to regulatory approval, is expected to close by end-May 2017.

Founded in 1920, Fannie May owns the iconic Fannie May and Harry London brands. The company filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in 2004 and was acquired by Alpine Confections, and later by New York-based 1-800-Flowers.com in 2006 for $85m. The company currently has 80 stores and one production facility in Ohio, with distribution centres in Ohio and Chicago.

Fannie May will operate as a stand-alone entity under Ferrero, with its own network of Fannie May stores and plans to expand over time. Ferrero noted: “We are confident there are significant opportunities to enhance Fannie May’s growth, leveraging Ferrero’s capabilities to sell new products through a substantially larger base of channels”.

The deal also includes a strategic partnership that will see Ferrero feature select confectionery products in 1-800-Flowers’ gift baskets.