The venture includes Del Monte branded retail outlets featuring nutritious foods and beverages to meet an increasing demand for healthier food options as well as collaboration on a line of chilled juices, prepared refrigerated fruit snacks, and guacamole and avocado products.
In addition to retail and new product ventures, the companies have agreed to expand Del Monte product sales in various markets around the world and they will share expertise and optimize economies of scale in product development, operations, sourcing, supply chain, marketing and distribution.
The retail food and beverage concept has already seen success with Fresh Del Monte Produce in the Middle East.
The joint ventures will be launched initially in the US with the potential to expand into other territories where the two businesses complement each other.
Commenting on the agreement, Rolando Gapud, chairman of the Board, DMPL, said it was pleased to have resolved its differences and put to rest the financial uncertainty that can arise from prolonged litigation.
The long-standing litigation between the two companies which were once part of America’s Del Monte Corp. centered on licensing rights and product distribution in various territories around the world.
“We look forward to combining the resources of Del Monte Pacific, our US subsidiary Del Monte Foods, and Fresh Del Monte Produce, and focusing our joint efforts on exciting new business opportunities that will provide consumers with more premium quality, healthy products,” said Gapud.
The food and beverage stores will sell a medley of Del Monte branded healthy snacks, such as salads, including some with protein, fresh-cut fruit salads, savory sandwiches, crisp vegetables in a wrap, smoothies, chilled juices, warm beverages, hummus and yogurt.
“We are in the early stages of creating the businesses, so we have a lot of work to do. We need to build separate organizational structures, finalize capital structures, and other customary transition steps.”
Mohammad Abu-Ghazaleh, chairman of the Board and CEO, Fresh Del Monte Produce agreed and said the partnership ‘offers tremendous opportunities for both companies to innovate on a much broader and deeper scale than either company can accomplish individually’.
“Each company brings a high level of knowledge, experience and commitment that comes from developing and building the iconic, trusted Del Monte brand,” he added.
“We also share similar visions for creating products and experiences that will meet the evolving needs of today’s consumer.”
Fresh Del Monte Produce through certain of its subsidiaries, has 16 locations in the Middle East region. These are a combination of grab and go and dine-in locations and it has selected a location for what will be its first dine-in food and beverage store in Europe.
It currently sells chilled juices in Kenya, the Middle East and Europe.