CHICAGO (CBS) – Chicago is about to get a little sweeter.
Mars, Inc. announced Wednesday a plan to combine its chocolate and Wrigley segments to create a Mars Wrigley Confectionery in Chicago.
The Mars Wrigley Confectionery combines some of the world’s favorite chocolates, such as Snickers, M&M’s, and Twix with Wrigley’s gum, mints and fruity candies, like Doublemint, Orbit, Altoids, Skittles and Starbursts. The confectionery will be led by Martin Radvan, current Global President of Wrigley and a 30-year veteran of Mars, Inc.
“Mars Wrigley Confectionery brings together two great businesses,” said Martin Radvan. “Strengthening our ability to create win-win relationships with our customers and improving our opportunities to address dynamic retail and consumer trends together.”
Mars purchased Wrigley in 2008, with Berkshire Hathaway holding a minor stake; but recently, Mars accelerated a plan to purchase Warren Buffett’s Berkshire’s $2.1 billion preferred stake ahead of the new confectionery.
“We are grateful for the strong and productive partnership we have with Warren Buffett and Berkshire Hathaway,” said Grant F Reid, Office of the President and CEO of Mars, Inc. “It is a great relationship that has yielded value on both sides. We’re equally pleased that sole ownership of Wrigley provides us with an opportunity to rethink how we simplify our chocolate and Wrigley businesses, so that we can bring a more holistic approach to this vibrant category.”
The Mars Wrigley Confectionery’s global hub will be located in Chicago, but will operate globally in about 70 countries with approximately 30,000 associates. The company has not released a number of how many jobs it will bring to Chicago, but said the unit will be the largest of its type in the industry.
Mayor Emanuel is proud to have Mars Wrigley headquartered in Chicago and said the new hub will strengthen the economy.
“Mars Wrigley Confectionery could not have chosen a better city to establish their global hub,” Emanuel said in a statement. “Thanks to recent headquarters relocations by companies like McDonalds, Kraft Heinz, ConAgra and Oscar Mayer, Chicago is staying at the forefront of the global economy, the center of the food industry, and the leading edge of the culinary world. I look forward to a sweeter future for Chicagoans and consumers everywhere and welcome Mars Wrigley Confectionery to Chicago.”