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Unilever says its purchase of US ice cream manufacturer Ben & Jerry's and the Slimfast diet food brand fit in perfectly with its strategy to concentrate on global powerbrands.

A spokesman said Slimfast and Ben & Jerry's took 90% of their sales in the US and had "massive international potential". He denied the purchases would clutter Unilever's culling strategy.

Unilever chairman Niall FitzGerald added: "We are determined to nurture Ben & Jerry's commitment to community values."

Ben & Jerry's will be run independently from Unilever's US ice cream operations, with a special team in place to maintain its ethical image. Unilever says it will inject $10m into the company's charity accounts when the $326m deal is finalised.
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Article Type:Brief Article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Apr 15, 2000
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