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NEW DELHI: Packaged foods and beverages company Nestle India on Thursday announced the acquisition of pet food business Purina Petcare India for an estimated 125.3 crore, as part of a transaction that will see the company now own and operate the brand, globally owned by Nestle, as part of Nestle India.

Nestle India also announced the launch of toddler food brand Gerber in India.

Purina is a pet food brand owned by Nestle globally. Purina Petcare was launched in India in 2017 as a separate entity.

“Since December 2017, Purina Petcare India has been undertaking the marketing and sale of PFB (dry dog and dry cat foods) under globally recognised brands such as Purina Supercoat, Purina Pro Plan and Purina Friskies," the company said in a filing to the exchanges.

The business transfer of Purina Petcare India Private Ltd. to Nestle India is set to happen from 1 October 2022.

“The business transfer (slump sale) would entail transfer of all assets and liabilities related to PFB including employees of Purina Petcare India," the company said in its filing. For the financial year ended 31 March 2022, Purina Petcare India reported a turnover of 36 crore.

Pet adoption has risen post pandemic, the company said.

“There are far greater synergies with evolution in channel strategies now than when the business was launched in 2018. The pet food business of Purina Petcare India has gained traction amongst Indian pet owners and established the pet food brands across key segments, while building a robust pet specialty distribution network, said Suresh Narayanan, Chairman and Managing Director, Nestlé India.

Going forward, leveraging Nestlé India’s network would accelerate the growth of pet food business in India and for Nestlé India a promising business would be a part of its portfolio from the quarter ending 31 December 2022, Narayanan added.

The move will help Nestle India gain access to pet foods business which grew at a compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) of 39.4% during 2018-21 and is projected to grow at a CAGR of 50% during 2022-26. Under the general licence agreement, access to world class proprietary know-how, technology and brands related to pet foods would also become possible.

In the first half of 2022, Purina Petcare India began sale and marketing of wet cat foods under the Fancy Feast brand.

The products are imported from Nestle Thailand and Nestle Australia. Purina Petcare India does not have any manufacturing facility in India.

On the launch of food brand Gerber, Narayanan said, “In coming months, products tailored to the needs in the toddler segment, relevant and resonant to their nutrition needs in India would be introduced under brand Gerber. It is with great pride that I share that these products are ‘Made in India’ and ‘Made for India'."

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