Mars Invests in Healthy Snacks, Takes Stake in Kind Bar

Mars, Incorporated, owner of popular brands like Snickers and M&M’s, has announced that they will buy a small stake in Kind, the high-quality non-artificial snack bars.

The deal values Kind at more than $4 billion, marking a significant value on one of the most popular new food brands in the past few years.

According to Nielsen, busy households today spend on average $133 annually on individual snack items. With everyone always on the go, it’s no surprise that the quick and handy snack bar has risen in popularity. With health being a rising issue, the no-preservatives, artificial-free and organic types of snacks are one of the fastest growing segments.

According to Euromonitor, an independent provider of strategic market research, Kind has been one of the fastest-growing players in the snack field, with 2017 sales having risen to $718.9 million.

“Our vision is that Kind is going to become the foremost health and wellness platform,” said Daniel Lubetzky, founder and CEO of Kind, according to CNBC.

Mars is working on reducing sugar and removing artificial ingredients in its food and candy. Mars has $35 billion in annual revenue and a vast overseas reach, including position in 2.3 million locations in China alone, including selling pedigree pet food and other pet care brands, in addition to snacks and candy.

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Deal does not prevent Kind from partnering with others

“This is a partnership built on mutual admiration and a shared vision for growth,” said Grant F. Reid, CEO and President of Mars. “We believe there is tremendous opportunity to build on the success of KIND’s product portfolio in new markets. As we continue to expand our business and broaden our portfolio to address evolving consumer needs, we’re delighted to partner with a respected leader in the health & wellness space.”

Kind sells through distributors in 14 countries, including Mexico, the United Kingdom and Ireland. With this recent investment, Kind expects to double in those countries and expand into others as well.

“The primary objective is to grow our core business globally,” he said in an interview. “We need to move fast,” Lubetzky said.

Lubetzky said the deal with Mars does not prevent KIND from partnering with other food makers in the future, especially if another company helps them grow beyond snack bars.

“In 2018,” Lubetzky said, “we’re going to be acquiring companies and entering new markets.”