Mondelez sells SnackWell's business to joint venture
(Reuters) - Packaged foods company Mondelez International Inc (MDLZ.O) has sold its SnackWell's cookies and snacks business to its joint venture with Brynwood Partners VI LP, the private equity firm said on Monday.
Brynwood did not disclose the financial details of the deal, which was earlier reported by the Wall Street Journal.
The joint venture, Back to Nature Foods Co LLC, was formed in 2012 and sells products such as crackers, cookies, nuts and trail mixes made without artificial flavors or preservatives.
Mondelez International holds a minority stake in the joint venture through its subsidiary Mondelez Global.
"SnackWell's significantly increases our scale in the important cookie and cracker categories," Back to Nature Chief Executive Vincent Fantegrossi said in a statement.
Brynwood said on Friday that it would sell its stake in DeMet's Candy Co, the U.S. maker of Flipz chocolate pretzels and Turtles covered nut clusters, to Turkey's Yildiz Holdings for $221 million.
The private equity firm's past acquisitions include food and confectionery businesses from companies such as Nestle (NESN.VX), PepsiCo Inc (PEP.N), ConAgra Foods Inc (CAG.N) and the Zest soap brand from Procter & Gamble Co (PG.N).
SnackWell's, originally launched by Nabisco Inc in 1992 as a brand of reduced fat and fat-free cookies and crackers, also sells pretzels and popcorn aimed at dieters.
Mondelez International faced criticism in July from activist investor Nelson Peltz, who said the company did not generate as much profit as it could and should be acquired by PepsiCo.
Shares of Deerfield, Illinois-based Mondelez International were little changed at $35.06 on Monday morning on the Nasdaq.
(Reporting by Maria Ajit Thomas in Bangalore; Editing by Kirti Pandey)
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