Swiss giant Nestle is selling its U.S. candy business to Italy’s Ferrero for about $2.8 billion in cash.
Nestle hinted last summer that it might sell its U.S. business, with its eye on areas like pet care, coffee and infant nutrition.
Ferrero will will take over the iconic brands like Nestle Crunch, Butterfinger, Baby Ruth, Raisinets, Nips, Skinny Cow, laffy taffy and Nerds.
Nestle’s 2016 confectionery sales are said to have brought in 3% of the company’s sales, according to the company.
“This move allows Nestle to invest and innovate across a range of categories where we see strong future growth and hold leadership positions, such as pet care, bottled water, coffee, frozen meals and infant nutrition,” CEO Mark Schneider said in a statement.
This big move will make Ferrero the third-largest chocolate confectionery in the world.
“We are very excited about the acquisition of Nestle’s U.S. confectionery business, which has an outstanding portfolio of iconic brands with rich histories and tremendous awareness,” Giovanni Ferrero, executive chairman of the Ferrero Group, said in a statement.
The sale of Nestle’s U.S. candy business doesn’t include the company’s chocolate brand KitKat or the Toll House baking line.
The deal is expected to close at the end of the first quarter.