Fonterra sells NZ ice-cream company Tip Top

Monday, 13 May, 2019

Fonterra sells NZ ice-cream company Tip Top

Global dairy co-operative Fonterra has announced it has sold New Zealand ice-cream business Tip Top to UK-based Froneri for $380 million.

Throughout its 80-year history, Tip Top has been owned by several international brands, with Fonterra taking ownership of it in 2001. Fonterra CEO Miles Hurrell said it couldn’t offer Tip Top the investment it needed, and received a number of bids for the brand.

“It’s a fantastic brand, and as a result, we’ve secured a good price for our farmers and unit holders.

“We’ve signed an agreement with the new owners to supply milk, which ensures that Fonterra farmers will continue to be part of the Tip Top story.

“We will also retain full global ownership of the Kāpiti brand and will be licensing its use for ice-cream to Froneri. This means our popular Kāpiti cheese isn’t going anywhere.

“It’s been a privilege being the guardians of Tip Top, but it’s time to hand the baton to new owners. The well-loved brand needs continuing investment and focused ownership to be sustainable for generations to come. It’s not something we’re in a position to do right now.”

Froneri is the third-largest ice-cream manufacturer in the world, selling its ice-cream brands in 20 countries. CEO Ibrahim Najafi said: “We have always admired Tip Top as New Zealand’s favourite and most trusted ice-cream brand. The acquisition enhances our scale and supports our vision to build the world’s best ice-cream company.”

The Tip Top name and its operations, including the Auckland-based factory site at Mount Wellington, will be maintained, and the business will continue to be led by the existing management team.

Najafi added: “Our consumers are at the heart of our business and we intend to invest in the Tip Top brands, products and manufacturing facility to ensure we continue to excite the market and New Zealanders with delicious high-quality ice-cream made from fresh New Zealand milk and cream.”

Tip Top Managing Director Kim Ballinger said the company will benefit from Froneri’s scale and expertise.

The agreed settlement date is 31 May 2019.

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