Nestle sells coffees to Sara Lee

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Nestle, Vevey, Switzerland, is setting the stage for a global push for Nescafe with the sale of its Chase & Sanborn, Hills Bros. and MJB coffee brands in the U.S. to Sara Lee Corp., Chicago. Analysts estimate Sara Lee paid about $280 million, equivalent to the combined annual sales of the brands. Nestle plans to focus its efforts on Nescafe, extending it into a global beverage brand that includes soluble coffee as well as coffee bars and kiosks. A national launch of the contemporized Nescafe is set for April 2001, and reportedly will get about $60 million in marketing support. McCann-Erickson Worldwide, New York, handles Nescafe.

Copyright December 1999, Crain Communications Inc.

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