AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND — The Arnott’s Group has acquired New Zealand-based gourmet biscuit maker 180degrees, a move that Arnott’s said “accelerates” its entry into the premium cracker category. Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
Founded in 2001, 180degrees has grown into one of the largest premium biscuit and cracker brands in New Zealand over the past 20 years. The company’s products include a wide range of premium oat and seed crackers, cheese bites and lavosh.
George Zoghbi, chief executive officer of The Arnott’s Group, said the acquisition created an opportunity for Arnott’s to strengthen and diversify its presence in New Zealand and support local business.
“We know there is a strong appetite in New Zealand for locally produced, premium, wholesome products,” he said. “The acquisition allows us to invest in a rapidly growing market and to continue to innovate by introducing new tastes and textures that complement our existing product range. Both Arnott’s and 180degrees are committed to creating delicious moments by producing products that focus on taste and integrity.”
Jill Seton, co-founder of 180degrees, called Arnott’s “the right fit” as a partner.
“It was important for us to partner with a company that shares our appreciation for legacy with a strong innovation approach,” she said. “As an iconic and much-loved business with a rich history, we knew the team at Arnott’s would be just the right fit. We are looking forward to working with The Arnott’s Group as we take the business to the next level.”
The announcement comes just a few months after The Arnott’s Group signed an agreement to acquire 75% of Diver Foods, an Australian maker of cereals and snacks. Once the deal is finalized Arnott’s said it plans to combine Diver Foods with Freedom Foods to launch a new business division: Good Food Partners. Arnott’s agreed to acquire the cereal and snacks business of Freedom Foods in December 2020. As part of that transaction, Arnott’s will acquire cereal and snacks manufacturing facilities in Leeton and Darlington Point in New South Wales and in Dandenong in Victoria, as well as all brands associated with the business, including Freedom Foods, Messy Monkeys, Heritage Mill, Arnold’s Farm and Barley+. The transaction does not include the Crankt Protein brand.