Grossinger /
Blue Bunny Wells Sm

Ferrero Group To Acquire Wells Enterprises/Blue Bunny Ice Cream

Dec. 7, 2022
Wells will be run as a standalone business with operations and management to remain intact.

Italy’s Ferrero Group, which already has a U.S. beachhead with Ferrara Candy Co. and other acquisitions, today (Dec. 7) announced an agreement to acquire U.S. ice cream-maker Wells Enterprises. Price was not disclosed. Both are privately held, family-run companies.

Wells’ brands include Blue Bunny, Bomb Pop and Halo Top. It has operations in Le Mars, Iowa, its headquarters; Henderson, Nev.; and Dunkirk, N.Y. Food Processing’s Top 100© list estimates the company’s sales at $1 billion. The company was founded in 1913.

Ferrero, which started in 1946 as a small pastry shop in Alba, Italy, has grown to become a global leader in sweet-packaged foods, including confectionery, biscuits, ice cream and snacks. Its brands include Nutella, Kinder, Tic Tac and Ferrero Rocher.

In the U.S., it acquired Fannie May Confections and the non-chocolate Ferrara Candy Co., both in 2017, and in 2018 Nestlé’s U.S. candy business and Kellogg’s cookies and fruit snacks businesses.

Wells Enterprises will remain a stand-alone business with its offices in Le Mars, Iowa. Mike Wells, member of the founding family and current CEO and chief engagement officer, will serve as an adviser for a while. Current Wells President Liam Killeen will be named CEO and the existing leadership team will remain in place.

About the Author

Dave Fusaro | Editor in Chief

Dave Fusaro has served as editor in chief of Food Processing magazine since 2003. Dave has 30 years experience in food & beverage industry journalism and has won several national ASBPE writing awards for his Food Processing stories. Dave has been interviewed on CNN, quoted in national newspapers and he authored a 200-page market research report on the milk industry. Formerly an award-winning newspaper reporter who specialized in business writing, he holds a BA in journalism from Marquette University. Prior to joining Food Processing, Dave was Editor-In-Chief of Dairy Foods and was Managing Editor of Prepared Foods.

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