Heinz contemplates acquisitions in Australia and NZ

Posted by Daniel Palmer on 30th May 2008

Heinz is on the look out for takeover targets in Australia and New Zealand following the success of the Cottee’s* brand which was purchased from Cadbury last year – according to Mike Milone, head of Heinz Australia and New Zealand.

“We’re always looking for similar opportunities in both countries or tied into larger corporate deals,” Mr Milone said yesterday at an analyst and investor meeting in New York. “The recent Cottee’s acquisition provided entry into a new segment. It added $50 million in sales.” Currently, the two countries provide Heinz with just under 10 per cent of their global revenue.

At the meeting Heinz announced a record profit of over $10 billion with the bulk of their growth attributed to their international expansion while their primary market in the US provided less growth than emerging markets. The Asia Pacific region experienced a 21% increase in sales compared to 10% in the US, as the American economy stagnates. Australia and New Zealand were attributed with almost 10 per cent of the company’s global revenue.

Along with the proposed expansion in the Southern Hemisphere, Heinz is looking toward the health and wellness category as well as developing markets to provide the impetus for their growth over the coming years.

*The Cottee’s purchase by Heinz included only jams and toppings with Cadbury maintaining the rights to Cottee’s branded cordial.