Fazer Group has agreed to acquire Kaslink, a Finland-based producer of premium Scandinavian food and drink products such as oat drinks.
Family-owned Kaslink’s product portfolio includes a range of cooking products, drinks and snacks made from local Scandinavian ingredients, and Fazer claims that Kaslink is an “expert in oat products”.
The company’s oat-based Kaslink Aito product range is popular as a dairy alternative in both the Finnish and Swedish markets, and includes oat drinks and snacks.
Once the deal has been completed, Kaslink will join Fazer’s Lifestyle Foods unit, and Fazer Group claims that the increased demand for plant-based products in Europe was one of the key motivations for the acquisition, as the deal will boost Fazer’s portfolio in this fast-growing segment.
According to statistics provided by Fazer, the market for non-dairy products in Western Europe is growing at a yearly rate of over 17%, and Fazer has made a number of significant investments to boost its presence in this market in the recent past. This included a commitment in January to build a new €40 million production facility in Lahti, which will exclusively manufacture plant-based products.
Christoph Vitzthum, Fazer Group’s president and CEO said: “We are excited to announce this acquisition as it would be a perfect match for Fazer in executing our strategy.
“Kaslink is an innovative actor with strong commercial insights, modern production facility and proficiency in production based on technological know-how.
“These create a highly competitive foundation for selling, marketing and producing sustainable oat-based products on an international scale.”
Raino Kukkonen, the founder of Kaslink, added: “Within the family, we had considered different options for some time already. We came to the conclusion that our ambition to grow would require more substantial resources.
We found that the best solution would be to move on with a new, significantly larger partner. It is of paramount importance to us that the ownership should remain in Finland.
“Fazer is a Finnish family-owned company with whom we share the wish to change how the world will eat in the future.”
© FoodBev Media Ltd 2019