French dairy firm Lactalis says it has agreed to buy Siggi‘s, the U.S.-based maker of low-sugar, Icelandic style skyr yogurts, for an undisclosed price.
A report in Reuters noted Siggi’s, which uses the tagline, “simple ingredients, not a lot of sugar,” has tapped into the consumer shift toward healthier eating with yogurt that's at least 25 percent less sugary than leading flavored yogurts, according to its website.
Lactalis said the deal “further expands our yogurt platform in the U.S. with this unique and fast-growing yogurt brand.” The dairy firm's purchase of Stonyfield Organic for $875 million from Danone Group closed in August.
One estimate put the Siggi's purchase price at $300 million.
Moving to New York from Iceland, Siggi’s founder Siggi Hilmarsson felt American yogurt was too sweet and artificial for his liking. He felt homesick for skyr, an Icelandic yoghurt/curd concoction. Based on a recipe sent by his mother, Hilmarsson began making skyr and went on to establish his own company in 2005, to sell it in the U.S.
Siggi’s will continue to operate from its New York City office and remain a standalone company under the leadership of Hilmarsson, Lactalis said in a statement.
Formally known as the Icelandic Milk & Skyr Corp., Siggi's was projecting 2018 sales of $200 million, based on a 50 percent growth rate.
“Our core values of clean ingredient label and less sugar will remain 100 percent unchanged. Consumers everywhere are actively trying to reduce sugar in their diets so our offering has a global relevance,” Hilmarsson said.
Privately held Lactalis is one of the world’s largest dairy companies, reporting annual sales of around 17 billion euros ($21 billion).