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Mondelez sells Middle East cheese business to Arla Foods

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By Reuters
Mondelez sells Middle East cheese business to Arla Foods
FILE PHOTO: The logo of Mondelez International is seen on an office building in the Glattpark district in Opfikon, Switzerland October 2, 2018. REUTERS/Arnd Wiegmann   -   Copyright  ARND WIEGMANN(Reuters)

By Jacob Gronholt-Pedersen

COPENHAGEN (Reuters) – Mondelez International Inc <MDLZ.O> has agreed to sell its Middle East cheese business, which is currently licensed under the Kraft brand, to Danish dairy firm Arla Foods.

The financial details of the deal, which includes a production site in Bahrain with capacity to produce 66,000 tonnes of processed cheese per year, were not disclosed.

Mondelez, the world’s No. 2 confectioner, with brands such as Oreo and Cadbury, separated in 2012 from Kraft Foods, a precursor to Kraft Heinz <KHC.O>.

The sale comes as Mondelez’s licence to sell products in the region under the Kraft brand expires in 2020.

Arla, which is owned by 11,200 farmers in Denmark and northern Europe, said that with the deal it aims to grow sales in the Middle East and North Africa to more than 1 billion euros (901 million pounds) by 2025 from around 560 million euros this year.

The deal is expected to close by the end of May next year, Arla said.

(Reporting by Jacob Gronholt-Pedersen; Editing by Kirsten Donovan)