Recently, Mars, Inc. — known for its prominent candy brands and providing sweet indulgences on a global scale — announced their purchase of healthy snack company Kind in a deal reportedly valued at between $4 billion and $5 billion (valuations differ by source). 

According to Business Insider, while Mars has had a minority stake in Kind since 2017, the change in ownership will bring healthier products under the Mars portfolio and “allow Kind to think about longer term investments in new products and markets.”

We recently posted a podcast on the Kind acquisition (Kind + Mars and the Play for Healthy Snacks), the substance of which was picked up in a MediaPost article, which notes: 

“As research provider The Hartman Group pointed out in a recent podcast, the deal comes as COVID-19 has changed the snacks scene—with consumers picking up fewer on-the-go quick treats on the way to work and doing more home stockpiling. Still, they're not necessarily pantry-loading healthy treats. ‘We’re seeing more emphasis on healthy eating this year coming from consumers as health and wellness is so clearly important right now,’ said Hartman Retainer Services consultant Robertson Allen. ‘But at the same time, with snacks a lot of people are finding that they just are such widely available inside their home that healthy eating can be challenging. They often find themselves surrounded by all this easily available food right there down the hall.’ While calling Kind a “leader in the growth and visibility of these kinds of healthy oriented, free-from snacks,” Allen opined ‘even Kind is likely feeling perhaps a bit unsteady going into next year. So I think they see this really as an opportunity to continue that expansion and at the same time, be relatively defensive during the pandemic and the current uncertain marketplace.’”

Mars’s acquisition of Kind — a leader in the healthy snacking space with a strong growth trajectory — secures the entry of yet another big food company into the health and wellness space and demonstrates that even such successful brands like Kind stand to benefit from assets like supply chain and funding gained through ownership by a larger corporation.

As Kind continues to grow under Mars’s ownership, they will need to continue to maintain the quality cues that have earned them such a positive reputation in the first place — simple ingredients, little sugar, and a philanthropic mission — in order to remain a leader in an increasingly crowded category.

To learn more about how snacking is changing, The Hartman Group’s upcoming Snacking 2020 syndicated study applies innovative approaches to examine what snacking looks like today. Snacking 2020 seeks to learn more about current needs that motivate snacking and seeks answers to questions like: Is snacking still about the pillars of nourishment, optimization, and pleasure? What snacks do consumers eat, and how are choices made differently between those working outside of their homes and those working remotely from home? What benefits do consumers expect their snacks to deliver?

More information:

New Upcoming Report:  Snacking 2020