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Serruya steps down as Yogen Fruz co-president.

Yogen Fr[ddot{u}]z World-Wide Incorporated, the Toronto-based international frozen dessert marketer, has announced that Michael Serruya, the company's founder and Co-Chairman of the Board, has stepped down as the Company's Co-President and Co-Chief Executive Officer. The day-to-day management of the Company has been assumed by David J. Stein, who had been serving the company's Executive Vice President as well as Chief Operating Officer of the Yogen Fr[ddot{u}]z subsidiary, Integrated Brands, Inc.

Stein will share the Presidency and CEO role with Richard Smith, who had been sharing those positions with Serruya since Integrated Brands, of which he had been the chairman, was joined with Yogen Fr[ddot{u}]z. Commenting on his decision to give up the two positions, Serruya said "It will allow Mr. Stein to focus on improving the efficiency and profitability of all of the company's component businesses, while permitting me to devote all of my time to exploring potential acquisitions and other strategies for maximizing shareholder value."

Since the mid-1990s, Yogen Fr[ddot{u}]z has been one of the most aggressive acquirers in the frozen dessert industry, developing a family of will-established brands from both retail and foodservice sides of frozen dessert industry, including Tropicana, Betty Crocker, Trix, Yoplait, Colombo, Lucky Charms and Yoo Hoo; and I Can't Believe It's Yogurt, Bresler's Ice Cream and Premium Frozen Yogurt, Swensen's Ice Cream, Steve's Ice Cream, Golden Swirl, Paradise, and Ice Cream Churn. The company has company-owned, franchised and non-traditional partnership locations in 82 countries, and is the world's largest franchisor of frozen yogurt outlets.

Along with the announcement of Serruya's change of position, Yogen Fr[ddot{u}]z also reported that it had signed a new master franchise agreement for the United Kingdom with North Pole Investments Ltd. The agreement gives North Pole the master rights for Yogen Fr[ddot{u}]z, Bresler's Ice Cream, I Can't Believe It's Yogurt and Java Coast Fine Coffees and calls for the company to open a total of 82 outlets throughout the U.K. The first two locations, to open in time for the summer season, are targeted for Stratford and London.

A statement released by Yogen Fr[ddot{u}]z noted that "this agreement builds on the market presence for the company's Brands first established in the United Kingdom through the National Amusements co-branding agreement, which has been extremely successful to date. There are currently 16 National Amusement outlets across the United Kingdom, offering Yogen Fr[ddot{u}]z and Bresler's."

In addition, Yogen Fr[ddot{u}]z announced that it has entered into a long-term, exclusive license agreement with PEZ Candy, Inc., of Orange, CT, under which Yogen Fr[ddot{u}]z will manufacture, sell, and distribute frozen novelties under the PEZ Candy brand name throughout North America. The Company will launch its new line of PEZ POPS candy-flavored ice pops in U.S. supermarkets this year.

Inside each box of PEZ POPS will be one PEZ Candy dispenser with two rolls of PEZ Candy, free with the consumer's purchase of PEZ POPS. PEZ Candy has been a popular brand throughout the world for 50 years, with over three billion PEZ Candies consumed last year in the U.S. alone. PEZ Candy is marketed in connection with distinctive character-oriented dispensers that have become prized collectibles.

Also, Yogen Fr[ddot{u}]z has extended the remaining term of its license agreement for frozen desserts with Tropicana Products by an additional five years. As a result, its exclusive rights to manufacture, sell and distribute frozen novelties and frozen desserts under the Tropicana brand name will continue for approximately the next seventeen years.

Yogen Fr[ddot{u}]z began distributing its line of Tropicana frozen fruit juice bars in the U.S. in 1997. Since then, Tropicana frozen novelties have been the fastest growing fruit juice-based product line for three straight years in the U.S., rising to number two in market share in their category.

Simultaneous with the extension of its Tropicana license, the company announced an ambitious development plan for the brand in the frozen dessert category, including a significant expansion of the Tropicana product line to include new flavors and varieties of frozen novelties, as well as pints and 500ml rounds branded as Tropicana Twirls, combining fruit sherbets with super-premium ice cream. The Company's development plan for Tropicana also includes the test marketing in the Metropolitan New York market area of Tropicana Dessert Centers, a merchandising concept calling for the blocking of all Tropicana frozen dessert products within an entire supermarket door of frozen retail space devoted exclusively to the Tropicana brand.

Also with Tropicana, Yogen Fr[ddot{u}]z has entered into a test marketing arrangement for the development of retail frozen dessert outlets branded as Tropicana Smoothies & Juices Bars and engaged primarily in the sale of freshly prepared Tropicana Smoothies. To date, Yogen Fr[ddot{u}]z has opened one prototype Tropicana Smoothies & Juices Bar in Las Vegas, Nevada, with what it describes as "highly encouraging initial results." Current plans call for additional test locations in the U.S., before planning full-scale roll-out of the concept.
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Title Annotation:Michael Serruya
Comment:Serruya steps down as Yogen Fruz co-president.(Michael Serruya)
Publication:Ice Cream Reporter
Article Type:Brief Article
Geographic Code:1CANA
Date:Apr 20, 2000
Words:855
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