BASEL, SWITZERLAND — Bell Food Group, through its Hilcona AG subsidiary, has reached an agreement to acquire Aryzta AG’s sandwich business in Switzerland. Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
Bell Food Group said the transaction will expand Hilcona’s market position in the growth area of sandwiches that are freshly prepared every day.
As part of the transaction, Bell Food Group will acquire Aryzta’s sandwich production plant in Schlieren, Switzerland, as well as the 25 employees who work at the site.
The Aryzta assets will be combined with Hilcona’s 500 employees at its production plant in Orbe, Switzerland, “to respond to the increased demand for a varied range of craft sandwiches, freshly prepared on a daily basis,” Bell Food Group said.
“Freshly baked bread and the highest-quality ingredients are still the most important recipe for success,” said Lorenz Wyss, chief executive officer of the Bell Food Group. “With proximity to the customer, innovation and traditional manufactory quality, we will stand out from our competitors in the growing market for ultra-fresh products.”
The Bell Food Group is one of the leading meat processors and convenience food specialists in Europe. Its range of products includes meat, poultry, charcuterie, seafood and convenience and vegetarian products. Brands include Bell, Eisberg, Hilcona and Hügli. Its customers include the retail trade as well as the foodservice sector and the food processing industry.
The sale of the fresh sandwich business is another step in Aryzta’s strategy of simplifying its business. The company in mid-March agreed to sell its North American baking business to private equity firm Lindsay Goldberg for $850 million.
Aryzta North America provides bread, sweet and savory baked foods, and snacks to customers in the quick-service restaurant, foodservice and retail markets across the United States and Canada. The company’s portfolio includes both private label and branded offerings under the Otis Spunkmeyer, La Brea Bakery and Oakrun Farm Bakery brands. Aryzta North America operates 15 production facilities with more than 4,000 employees in the United States and Canada.