Chocolatier Godiva to sell Asian-Pacific operations to MBK Partners

Godiva Chocolatier, the Belgian producer of connoisseur goodies, has agreed to sell parts of its Asia-Pacific enterprise to personal equity company MBK Partners, Godiva CEO Annie Young-Scrivner instructed Reuters on Wednesday.

The deal incorporates Godiva’s operations in Japan, South Korea and Australia, and the manufacturing facility in Belgium supplying these areas. Young-Scrivner declined to disclose deal phrases, nevertheless the transaction may be value between $1 billion and $1.5 billion, sources have beforehand instructed Reuters.

Godiva, owned by Turkey’s Yildiz Holding, will use the proceeds to finance diversification, along with an enlargement of its cafe enterprise from 20 outlets to higher than 2,000 globally inside the subsequent six years.

“We thought of multiple ways to potentially fund our investment and what we have decided on was to go look for a buyer,” Young-Scrivner acknowledged in an interview.

The Belgian chocolate maker has mapped out plans to develop its revenues fivefold over the next six years, Young-Scrivner acknowledged.

“We’ve gone through this exercise of thinking through: we are chocolate, so what are the categories that we can expand into in chocolate, but also what pairs well with chocolate?”

“Coffee, tea are natural complements to chocolate and then we also looked into the Belgian heritage. You’ll see us expand into the bakery area as well.”

The agency, which had a presence in further than 100 worldwide places sooner than the deal launched Wednesday, will proceed to look to develop internationally, in all probability into Mexico and Argentina, Young-Scrivner acknowledged.

With roots in a biscuit retailer started by two brothers in Istanbul in 1944, family-owned Yildiz has grown right into a world company with western companions along with Kellogg and McCormick.

It spent $850 million to buy Godiva in 2007, as well as to an estimated 2 billion kilos ($2.63 billion) on McVitie’s maker United Biscuits and $221 million on DeMet’s, maker of Flipz chocolate pretzels, in 2014.

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