Each year Candy Industry compiles a list of the Top 100 candy companies in the world. Below, you’ll not only find out where candy company ranks, but also their estimated net sales, how many employees they have and which products they make. Have feedback? Editor-in-chief Bernard Pacyniak would love to hear from you! Just shoot him note at firstname.lastname@example.org.
And the acquisition of the year may go to Chocoladenfabriken Lindt & Sprüngli. The Kilchberg, Switzerland confectioner bought U.S. box chocolate-giant Russell Stover for a reportedly $1.5 billion. With more than a 9 percent increase in sales at Lindt alone, the company is now at the No. 7 spot globally, with projected net sales for 2014 at $4.02 billion.
Lindt’s Chairman and CEO Ernst Tanner said it was the “biggest and most important strategic acquisition in the company’s history’’ and that the merger will “greatly
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complement Lindt & Sprüngli’s existing premium chocolate portfolio in the world’s biggest chocolate marketplace and will give Lindt & Sprüngli an established presence throughout the USA with its Lindt, Ghirardelli, Russell Stover and Whitman brands.”
The addition of the Russell Stover and Whitman’s brands perfectly complements Lindt & Sprüngli’s existing chocolate portfolio and will place the company amongst the top four U.S. chocolate manufacturers, behind Mars, Mondelez and Hershey. Andreas Pfluger, of Lindt, will be replacing Tom Ward as president and ceo of Russell Stover.
Another major player that just got bigger is Yildiz Holding Co., of Istanbul, Turkey. It increased 2014 sales $2.0 billion after purchasing DeMet’s for $221 million from Brynwood Partners at the end of 2013 and then United Biscuits in November, which had net sales predicted at $1.27 billion. [Editor’s Note: Only United Biscuits’ chocolate-enrobed product sales were included in Yildiz’ 2014 sales figure.] DeMet’s had been reported to have net sales of around $130 million in 2013.
But there’s plenty more where that came from.
No. 6 Hershey Foods Corp. recently purchased Ontario-based Allan Candy Co., which has one plant and 400 employees, for a reported $28 million. Allan Candy makes gummies and toffees, is a Canadian leader of candy canes and novelty chocolate and has been manufacturing Hershey’s Jolly Ranchers and Lancaster caramels for North America. Earlier in the year, Hershey acquired Shanghai Golden Monkey which helped boost its annual sales to a predicted $7,485 million.
Cloetta A.B. acquired both the dry-roasted nut producer Alrifai Nutisal AB, of Sweden, and The Jelly Bean Factory, of Ireland, over the last year. The Swedish company has seen almost a 9 percent growth over last year’s sales but the $787.6 million the company projects to end the year doesn’t reflect the whole growth because of the increased value in the U.S. dollar. Because of this discrepancy, Candy Industry will start highlighting companies on the chart in color if the sales figures used were given in a currency other than the U.S. dollar. All of our conversions come from the Oanda.Com website.
Gift specialist 1-800-Flowers.Com, Inc., of Carle Place, NY, acquired Harry & David in September to add to their collection of chocolate manufacturers Fannie May and Harry London. Although a spokesperson in the investor relations department said the move didn’t have much impact on 2014’s revenues, he forecasted 2015 would see an increase of $100 million. This conversation took place before the Thanksgiving Day fire at their Maple Heights, Ohio, warehouse and distribution plant with a prediction that the Christmas season could be affected.
Chocolat Frey, of Buchs, Switzerland, acquired SweetWorks in January 2014, allowing Philip Terranova to stay on as president of the New York-based company that includes Oak Leaf gum and Nerds. This bumped up Chocolat Frey’s business by an estimated $37 million, projecting the year to end around $465 million. Two plants and about 450 employees were acquired as well.
Elvan Group moved up in the rankings 10 spots from last year as sales have increased to a projected $220 million. The Istanbul, Turkey, confectionery acquired Balaban Gida, from Nestle, in October. Balaban Gida produced such well-known brands as Toto, Delirium, Fiorella and Monte. This, in turn, caused Elvan to expand its product line to include biscuits and real chocolate products, according to a company spokesperson.
Editor’s Note: As always, the Global Top 100 is a “work in progress,” given that many companies refuse to share their financials. If there are any oversights or incorrect estimates, please feel free to contact Candy Industry’s Editor-in-Chief Bernard Pacyniak at email@example.com.