Brussels, Belgium _ Bangalore: Mars Food has signed a definitive agreement today to acquire Preferred Brands International, a Stamford, Connecticut-based, fully integrated manufacturer and marketer of all-natural, ready-to-heat Indian and Asian food products sold primarily under the Tasty Bite® brand.

TastyBite’s® portfolio includes a wide range of vegetarian offerings, includingIndian/Asian entrees, spice and simmer meal kits, and organic rice and lentils.While the majority of sales are generated in North America, Preferred BrandsInternational also manufactures products that are sold through retailers in theUK and Australia and through foodservice in India. 

Today’sagreement brings together two strong food businesses focused on deliveringhealthy, tasty, and convenient foods that bring inspiration and enjoyment tothe world’s dinner table. Mars Food, a segment of Mars, Incorporated, has abroad portfolio of brands loved by consumers around the world, includingready-to-eat and dry rices and grains, sauces, meal kits, meal helpers, andspices under the brands UNCLE BEN’S®, MASTERFOODS®, DOLMIO®, SEEDS OF CHANGE®,and others. 

Tasty Bite®manufactures products out of its Pune, India manufacturing facility and exportsthe majority of its products to the US. Preferred Brands International alsoenjoys a significant foodservice business under which it supplies food productsto other leading food manufacturers and quick service restaurants in India. 

TastyBite® has a subsidiary which is listed on the Bombay Stock Exchangeand the National Stock Exchange of India. This subsidiary will continue to belisted after the acquisition. 

“TastyBite’s® broad range of dinner time products, focused on Indian and Asiancuisines, makes it a natural complement to our existing portfolio,” said MarsFood Global President Fiona Dawson. “Tasty Bite® is a fast growing Indian/Asiandinner time brand. Upon closing of the acquisition of Tasty Bite®, Mars Foodwill expand our all-natural vegetarian offerings in the US, and leverage TastyBite’s® strong product development pipeline, flavor expertise, and strategicsourcing of quality ingredients throughout our portfolio.” 

"We’rethrilled to be joining the Mars Food family,” said Tasty Bite CEO AshokVasudevan. “The nearly quarter century of uninterrupted growth of Tasty Bitesince its inception was powered by our deep commitment tosustainable practices and to the pursuit of consumer delight. 

“Mars is oneof the largest food companies in the world and a recognized leader and rolemodel for corporate sustainability. Mars Foods’ strong brand portfolio, globalinfrastructure, and shared values makes it well-positioned to take Tasty Biteto the next level.” 

Theacquisition of Preferred Brands International is subject to applicableregulatory approvals and is expected to close by Q4 2017. Morgan Stanley &Co. LLC served as financial advisor to Mars Food. Skadden, Arps, Slate,Meagher & Flom LLP served as legal advisor to Mars Food, and AZB &Partners served as India legal advisor. Tasty Bite® was represented by GoldmanSachs, The Giannuzzi Group, and Shardul Amarchand Mangaldas.

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