Unilever Central and Eastern Europe has bought out "Darko", the second largest distributor and producer of ice cream in Bulgaria.
Unilever and the Balkan Accession Fund (BAF), Darko's current owner, announced the deal Monday, without specifying the amount of money the multinational giant will pay BAF for Darko and its brands.
The announcement says that Darko's 80 employees will become part of Unilever's team in Bulgaria. Darko will retain its staff and production for the Bulgarian market.
In 2010, Darko's sales totaled EUR 7 M. Its popular ice cream brands include Eskimo, Casablanca, Weekend, Alaska, Milka. Darko is second on the Bulgarian ice cream market only to Nestle.
"Darko is a valuable asset for us because it has well-known brands and strong positions on the market. We will use the current business activities and global leadership position of Unilever in this field in order to consolidate further our positions in the Balkan region," explained Marc Desefansm who is at the helm of Unilever South Central Europe, the regional company that governs from Bucharest the group's operations in the Balkans.
The press statement on the acquisitions says that the purchase of Darko will enable Unilever to enter Bulgaria's ice cream market.
Darko's owner BAF bought the company in 2007 after it was declared bankrupt in 2006.