December 2, 2021

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Unilever will sell its Ekaterra tea division

Unilever will sell its Ekaterra tea division

Unilever will sell its Ekaterra tea division to CVC Partners for €4.5 billion. The division includes 34 brands including Lipton, Boca and Tazo.

The head of the Dutch-British manufacturer Alan Jope is trying to simplify the business of the group, which offers a wide range of products from soap to ice cream. Unilever began reassessing the future of its tea division two years ago. The sale should be completed in the second half of next year.

Last year, Ikatera’s sales amounted to nearly two billion euros. Even after the sale, Unilever will maintain its tea activities in India and Indonesia and a joint venture to produce packaged tea with PepsiCo.

With the sale, Unilever is shedding a company that has held back its profits for several years as demand for black tea drops and consumer tastes change.

Unilever shares are tumbling and the company is struggling to compete in emerging markets, which are its biggest source of revenue. Jope plans to focus the company on higher growth areas, such as plant-based foods, nutrition and luxury cosmetics.

According to its website, CVC has about $165 billion in assets. They include a series of Formula 1 racing cars, Swiss watchmaker Breitling, Indonesian snack maker GarudaFood, and Czech brewery StarBev. (reading, Reuters)

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