Biscuit maker's strong heritage appealed to new owner.
The sale of Griffin’s to a Filipino company is expected to see the Kiwi-made biscuits enjoyed in more overseas markets.
Griffin’s, the makers of Gingernuts, Cookie Bear, MallowPuffs, Eta Salty Snacks and Nice & Natural Snack Bars, has been bought from Australian company Pacific Equity Partners for NZ$700 million, subject to Overseas Investment Office approval.
New owner Universal Robina Corporation (URC) has a network of consumers in the Philippines, Vietnam, Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, Hong Kong and China.
URC president and chief executive Lance Gokongwei said Griffin’s was a natural strategic fit for the company’s existing snack foods portfolio given its strong brand heritage in New Zealand – “a country trusted worldwide in having high credibility when it comes to food quality, safety and authenticity”.
“We believe Griffin’s is at the forefront of global consumer trends in snacking, including indulgence; a sense of play and excitement; using natural ingredients; ensuring traceability of source; and providing healthy alternatives,” Mr Gokongwei said.
Griffin’s chief executive-elect Alison Taylor said while Griffin’s would continue to grow its domestic business, its focus was also on developing export.
“We’d love to see more of New Zealand’s high quality and much-loved products being enjoyed and recognised in other markets,” she said.
Griffin’s was founded by John Griffin in Nelson in 1864. Griffin’s was owned by Kraft’s Nabisco (USA) in the 1960s for close to 30 years and Groupe Danone (France) in the 1990s for 16 years.