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Mars Buys Out Buffett To Take Full Control Of Wrigley And Merge It With Chocolate Business

Posted On: 10/6/2016

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TAGS: vending, Berkshire Hathaway's Wrigley equity, Mars Inc., Mars Wrigley Confectionery, Mars Wrigley Confectionery, Martin Radvan

Early buyout of Berkshire Hathaway's equity in Wrigley enables creation of Mars Wrigley Confectionery

MCLEAN, VA -- Mars Inc. announced on Oct. 6 its intent to combine its chocolate and Wrigley segments to create Mars Wrigley Confectionery.

Since Mars acquired Wrigley in 2008 for $23 billion, Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway has held a minority stake in Wrigley that was subject to purchase by Mars over time. Mars recently accelerated the purchase of Berkshire Hathaway's entire equity interest in Wrigley, enabling it to combine the Mars Chocolate and Wrigley units.

Mars Wrigley Confectionery will bring together some of Mars's biggest brands in chocolate, gum and non-chocolate confections, including M&M's, Snickers, Extra, Orbit, Skittles and Starburst.

Martin Radvan, current global president of Wrigley and a 30-year veteran of Mars Inc., will lead the new company.

"Mars Wrigley Confectionery brings together two great businesses, strengthening our ability to create win-win relationships with our customers and improving our opportunities to address dynamic retail and consumer trends together," Radvan said.

The Mars Wrigley Confectionery business will have approximately 30,000 associates operating in about 70 countries. Its global hub will be in Chicago.

Mars Chocolate and Wrigley will continue to operate separately. Jean-Christophe Flatin will continue as president of Mars Global Chocolate and Casey Keller, previously regional president of Wrigley Americas, will become president of global Wrigley.

The merger of Mars Chocolate and Wrigley is expected to occur in 2017.