Switzerland-based Nestlé S.A. says it’s “exploring strategic options” for its nearly $1-billion U.S. confectionery business, including a possible sale.
The company, whose USA division will move to Arlington County, Va., this year, on Thursday announced a review that covers only the U.S. market. Nestlé expects to complete the review by the end of the year.
Nestlé's U.S. confectionery division pulled in $922 million in 2016 — about 3 percent of its $27.4-billion U.S. business, the company said in a news release. It primarily includes chocolate brands such as Butterfinger, Baby Ruth, 100 Grand, SkinnyCow, Raisinets, Chunky, OhHenry! and SnoCaps, as well as sugar brands such as SweeTarts, LaffyTaffy, Nerds, FunDip, PixyStix, Gobstopper, BottleCaps, Spree and Runts. It also includes the international chocolate brand Crunch.
The strategic review does not cover Nestlé's Toll House baking products, a brand which the company will continue to develop in the U.S. market. The company also plans to grow its $8.8-billion global confectionery business, particularly through Kit Kat, which is licensed in the U.S. by Hershey.
Nestlé, which took the No. 5 spot in Candy Industry’s 2017 Global Top 100 ranking, said it will continue to innovate across other categories such as pet care, bottled water, frozen meals, infant food and ice cream.