Known for its Kellogg’s branded breakfast foods, Kellogg Co. (K) is a global food company that sells cereals and snacks such as Cheez-It biscuits, Pringles and Egg waffles. Kellogg’s was founded in 1906 as the Battle Creek Grilled Nachos Company. Since then, the company has expanded into a large multinational company, manufacturing products in 21 countries/regions and operating in more than 180 countries/regions. Kellogg’s 2020 net sales will be 13.8 billion U.S. dollars and net income will be 1.3 billion U.S. dollars. As of July 10, 2021, the company’s market value was 21.9 billion U.S. dollars.
When Kellogg was founded, it focused on creating healthy breakfast cereals. But as the company expanded, it added more and more high-sugar grains. Now, as consumers become more health-conscious, Kellogg’s is reshaping its product portfolio to provide healthier food options while offering traditional products. One example is Kellogg’s divestiture of its biscuit, fruit snacks and ice cream business in 2019. It was sold to Ferrero Group for $1.3 billion. These include brands such as Keebler, Mother’s, Famous Amos, Murray’s, Little Brownie Bakers and Stretch Island.
But more important than divestment is that Kellogg has reshaped its investment portfolio through a series of acquisitions. These transactions proceed along two tracks. One direction has been focusing on healthier products. The second direction focuses on expanding Kellogg’s traditional products (such as breakfast cereals) to international markets where there is room for growth. As consumers in North America and elsewhere increasingly choose non-cereal breakfasts, this expansion is critical to Kellogg.
Below, we will look at five acquisitions performed by Kellogg, including a joint venture. Please note that Kellogg’s usually does not provide annual revenue and profit data by subsidiary or brand.
- Business Type: Protein Bar
- Purchase price: US$600 million
- Purchase Date: October 6, 2017
Kellogg’s acquired Chicago Bar Company for US$600 million in 2017, which is the manufacturer of the RXBAR protein bar series. Chicago Bar was established in 2012 and has quickly grown into a nationally recognized protein bar manufacturer. The acquisition helped Kellogg further expand into healthier snack options, which it calls “healthy snacks.” These energy bars are made of egg whites, fruits and nuts, provide 12 grams of protein and 210 to 220 calories, ensuring that health-conscious consumers know exactly what they are eating and the nutritional value of each energy bar. In June 2021, RXBAR launched its first plant-based protein bar, providing an alternative to its standard egg formula.
- Business Type: Potato Chips
- Purchase price: US$2.7 billion
- Purchase Date: May 31, 2012
In 2012, Kellogg’s acquired Pringles potato chips from Procter & Gamble (PG) for US$2.7 billion. At the time of the acquisition, Pringles had sales of US$1.5 billion in more than 140 countries, making it the second largest player in the savoury snack business. Global influence is important to Kellogg, because Kellogg’s international influence is limited, and this transaction has almost tripled the scale of Kellogg’s international snack business.
- Business Type: Food Group
- Purchase price: estimated at 429 million US dollars
- Purchase Date: October 13, 2016
Parati Group is a Brazilian food group known for products such as biscuits, powdered beverages and pasta. In 2016, Kellogg acquired Ritmo Investimentos, the controlling shareholder of the Parati Group. At that time, the Parati Group estimated net sales of approximately US$190 million. This transaction is Kellogg’s largest Latin American acquisition in history.It represents a key strategic move to enter the emerging market sector, where the grain market is far less saturated than the United States
- Business Type: Grain
- Purchase price: US$32 million
- Date of purchase: June 2000
Founded in 1984, Kashi is an organic breakfast cereal company focused on nutrition and ethical sourcing practices. Kellogg’s acquired the business in 2000 for US$32 million. Since then, the Kashi product line has grown to include healthy meals, snack bars and waffles. This acquisition complements Kellogg’s acquisition of Worthington Foods, a plant-based food company, which Kellogg acquired for US$307 million the previous year. Worthington is famous for its vegetarian burgers. In short, these two acquisitions represent Kellogg’s earliest and most important health food brand to enter, creating a healthier image for the company.
Joint venture with Tolaram Group
- Business Type: Diversified Food
- Purchase price: approximately USD 450 million (50% stake in Multipro, option to buy stake in Tolaram Africa Foods); Invested US$420 million in Tolaram Africa Foods in 2018
- Purchase date: September 15, 2015 (first transaction); May 2, 2018 (acquired equity of Tolaram Africa Foods)
The last entry on our list is not exactly a company owned by Kellogg, but an important joint venture of that company. Tolaram Group is a holding company headquartered in Singapore, established in 1948. In 2015, Kellogg’s acquired a 50% stake in Multipro Food Sales and Distribution, a subsidiary of the Tolaram Group. Kellogg also retains the option to purchase shares in Tolaram Africa Foods (Tolaram’s African subsidiary). In 2018, Kellogg’s exercised its option to acquire shares in Tolaram Africa Foods and invested approximately US$420 million on the basis of its early joint venture equity. Like many of Kellogg’s acquisitions, this acquisition expands its footprint in an unsaturated, fast-growing market.
Kellogg’s diversity and inclusion transparency
As part of our efforts to raise awareness of the importance of company diversity, we emphasized Kellogg’s transparency in its commitment to diversity, inclusion, and social responsibility. The figure below illustrates how Kellogg reports on the diversity of its management and workforce. This indicates whether Kellogg disclosed data on the diversity of its board of directors, top management, general managers, and employees on various indicators. We have used ✔ for transparency.
|Kellogg Diversity and Inclusion Report|
|Race||gender||ability||Veteran status||Sexual orientation|
|Board of Directors||✔|
|Integrated management||✔ (U.S. only)||✔|
|employee||✔ (U.S. only)||✔||✔|