Britannia to scale cheese biz fivefold with French partner

New Delhi: Packaged food maker Britannia Industries Ltd expects its cheese business to grow fivefold to 1,250 crore over the next five years buoyed by an expected expansion in product portfolio following a joint venture with French cheese maker Bel.

Earlier this week, Britannia and Bel entered a partnership to offer a range of cheese products for the Indian market. As part of the terms of the alliance, Bel will acquire a 49% stake in Britannia’s wholly-owned subsidiary Britannia Dairy Pvt. Ltd and the joint venture entity will be renamed as Britannia Bel Foods Pvt. Ltd.

The firm will manufacture and sell co-branded products under the “Britannia” and “The Laughing Cow” trademarks, seeking to capitalize on the small, but growing cheese market in India.

The partnership will seek to develop the cheese market in India by offering a wide range of products. Bel sells cheese under The Laughing Cow, Kiri, Babybel and Boursin brands globally. “This JV is about cheese, and cheese is about 50% of our dairy portfolio. The trick is to grow this cheese portfolio five times in five years. It’s about 250 crore right now,” said Varun Berry, executive vice-chairman and managing director, Britannia,…

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