Home » Dean Foods To Buy Friendly’s Ice Cream Retail Business

Dean Foods To Buy Friendly’s Ice Cream Retail Business

Last updated on June 13th, 2024 at 05:06 pm

Dean Foods of Dallas, Texas, will acquire the manufacturing and retail ice cream business of Friendly’s Ice Cream from an affiliate of Friendly’s Restaurants for $155 million.

Friendly’s Ice Cream, with $166 million in net sales in 2015, produces packaged ice cream and other frozen dessert products, including single-serve sundae cups, novelty items, cakes and rolls. Friendly’s distributes these products in more than 8,000 retail outlets.

“We are thrilled at the prospects the Friendly’s Ice Cream acquisition brings to Dean Foods,” said Gregg Tanner, Dean Foods CEO. “Coupled with the momentum of Dean Foods’ current regional brands, the Friendly’s brand will be a catalyst in our strategy to grow our existing ice cream business and branded portfolio. Friendly’s is an ideal complement to our other heritage brands across the country and fills a manufacturing and retail ice cream void in our nationwide footprint.”

He added, “We think the Friendly’s culture will be an excellent fit for Dean Foods, and we are delighted to welcome the Friendly’s employees into our company. Working together with the senior leadership team of Friendly’s Ice Cream, we look forward to continuing to grow the manufacturing and retail ice cream business.”

In addition to acquiring Friendly’s manufacturing and retail ice cream business, Dean Foods will acquire the Friendly’s trademark as well as all intellectual property associated with the ice cream business.

Friendly’s Restaurants, a family-dining restaurant chain with more than 260 locations in the U.S., will continue to be owned and operated by an affiliate of Sun Capital Partners Inc. and will license use of the Friendly’s trademark as part of the transaction. The transaction is expected to close late in the second quarter of 2016, subject to regulatory approvals.

Following the close of the transaction, Friendly’s Ice Cream will continue to operate out of its facility in Wilbraham, Massachusetts, and the senior management team of Friendly’s Ice Cream will continue to lead the business.

“Today (May 10) marks a new chapter for Friendly’s retail and manufacturing ice cream business,” said John Maguire, Friendly’s president and CEO. “Dean Foods Co. has recognized the growth momentum that Friendly’s retail ice cream has experienced over the last five years and I am thrilled that Dean Foods will be the ongoing steward of the retail ice cream business, led by the current experienced retail and creamery teams.”

Maguire added, “The restaurants have experienced tremendous growth in sales and guest traffic over the last 15 months—a direct result of the introduction of new and exciting menu items, extensive renovations to existing locations, compelling value propositions and the addition of drive-thru windows. Friendly’s restaurants are poised for continued market share growth.”

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The Shelby Report delivers complete grocery news and supermarket insights nationwide through the distribution of five monthly regional print and digital editions. Serving the retail food trade since 1967, The Shelby Report is “Region Wise. Nationwide.”

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