HUNT VALLEY, MD. – McCormick & Co., Inc. has acquired FONA International, LLC, Geneva, Ill., for $710 million in cash. FONA International is a flavor manufacturer that serves the food, beverage and nutrition markets.
The FONA acquisition is the second significant transaction McCormick has made during the past two months. In late November, the company announced plans to acquire the Cholula Food Co., the maker of Cholula Hot Sauce, for $800 million.
“The acquisition of FONA reinforces McCormick’s global growth strategy as FONA expands the breadth of our flavor solutions segment into attractive categories, as well as extends our technology platform and strengthens our capabilities,” said Lawrence E. Kurzius, chairman, president and chief executive officer of McCormick & Co. “This acquisition also accelerates the strategic migration of our portfolio to more value-added and technically insulated products and thus, is expected to be accretive to gross margin.”
FONA is projected to generate $114 million in 2020 sales, according to McCormick & Co. The company has a manufacturing plant and innovation center located in Illinois and it employs approximately 220. McCormick said it plans to retain the FONA brand.
“The Slawek family is very proud of the customers, the employee culture and the company we have built,” said Joseph Slawek, founder, CEO and chairman of FONA International. “We are excited to see the next generation of FONA flourish as part of McCormick. We are confident McCormick will further enable FONA’s forward momentum by continuing to make investments in growth initiatives, capabilities and people.”