Mars, the giant candy company, agreed to buy Kind North America, a seller of healthy snacks, in a transaction reportedly valuing Kind at about $5 billion.
Company executives informed The New York Times of the deal. Sources told the Times that the transaction values Kind at $5 billion .
The health food craze obviously attracted Mars, which owns M&M’s and Snickers, to Kind. Mars, owned by the Mars family, ranks as the sixth biggest privately held company in the country, according to Forbes. It also owns several pet-food brands, including Iams, Pedigree and Royal Canin.
In 2017, Mars bought a minority stake in Kind, which keeps artificial flavors and preservatives out of its Kind bars and other snacks.
Kind founder and Executive Chairman Daniel Lubetzky owns a majority stake in the company. He told The Times he will still do work for Kind and keep a share of it.
Lubetzky also said the sale would allow his company to take a longer view and continue to consider new products, geographic expansion and, likely, acquisitions, the Times reported Tuesday,
“We don’t need to worry about getting a return in 2021,” said Lubetzky in an interview with the newspaper. “We can think about investments that make sense for two, three, five, 10 years out.”
Kind’s sales have risen from roughly $1 billion at the end of 2017 to about $1.5 billion, the Times noted.