FrieslandCampina Is Said to Mull Options for Friso Formula Brand

Royal FrieslandCampina NV is considering options for its Friso infant nutrition brand as it pushes ahead with efforts to streamline its business, according to people familiar with the matter.

The Dutch food group is working with JPMorgan Chase & Co. on a strategic review of Friso, the people said, asking not to be identified discussing confidential information.

Friso manufactures formula for infants and toddlers and its products are available in 25 countries across Europe, the Middle East, Asia and Mexico, according to its website. Deliberations are at an early stage, and FrieslandCampina hasn’t made any final decisions on the future of the business, the people said.

Representatives for FrieslandCampina and JPMorgan declined to comment.

The review comes as FrieslandCampina pushes ahead with a plan to reduce costs by as much as 100 million euros ($121 million) annually from 2022. FrieslandCampina said in November it could divest more non-core assets as it continues reviewing the company’s worldwide portfolio.

FrieslandCampina is seeking a buyer for its 50% stake in Thai yogurt venture Betagen, in a sale that could fetch as much as $500 million, Bloomberg News reported this month. The company also plans to cut about 1,000 jobs by the end of 2021 and is shuttering some production facilities in the Netherlands and Belgium.

The market for infant formula is forecast to expand to $59.5 billion by 2022, up from $54.7 billion last year, according to Euromonitor International Ltd. Friso had 3.3% global market share last year, making it the world’s seventh most popular formula brand, Euromonitor data show. That’s down from 4.2% in 2017.

©2021 Bloomberg L.P.

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