NESTLE COMPLETES DREYER'S ACQUSITION

New Company Formed; Agency Realignment Likely

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NEW YORK (AdAge.com) -- Nestle and Dreyer's Grand Ice Cream completed the merger of their ice cream brands and formed of a new publicly held company, Dreyer's Grand Ice Cream Holdings, to hold those assets, the companies announced yesterday.

Nestle owns roughly 67% of the Dreyer's Holdings stock.

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The final closure of Nestle's

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$2.8 billion acquisition of Dreyer's came the day after approval by the Federal Trade Commission, which required the companies to divest themselves of a variety of brands and distribution systems. The FTC had been concerned about antitrust issues. According to the FTC, Nestle, Dreyer's and Unilever-owned Ben & Jerry's account for about 98% of superpremium ice cream sales.

Goodby, JWT
The formation of the new company is expected to spark a realignment of agency assignments for the remaining ice cream brands. Two agencies likely to benefit are Dreyer's agency of record, Omnicom Group's Goodby, Silverstein & Partners, San Francisco, and WPP Group's J. Walter Thompson, Chicago, which handles former Nestle brands Haagen-Dazs and ice cream novelties.

Measured media spent last year totaled less than $2 million for Dreyer's brands, the bulk of that against superpremium brand Dreamery -- no longer a part of the new Dreyer's -- and $4.1 million against Haagen-Dazs, according to TNS Media Intelligence/CMR.

The new Dreyer's named Timothy F. Kahn executive vice president and chief operating officer as well as chief integration officer, charged with guiding the company through the integration of Dreyer's and Nestle's U.S. ice cream business. Mr. Kahn was previously Dreyer's vice president for finance and administration and chief financial officer. Alberto Romaneschi, a 14-year veteran of Nestle, who most recently served as chief financial officer of Cereal Partners Worldwide, Nestle's joint venture with General Mills, will replace Mr. Kahn.

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