[13 May/The Country]

Fonterra Co-operative Group has sold Tip Top to global dairy giant Froneri for $380 million. Froneri is the second largest manufacturer of ice cream in Europe. The sale of Top Top represents a gain of around $100 million above book value, the agreed settlement date is 31 May 2019. Fonterra CEO Miles Hurrell confirmed the sale whilst Froneri CEO Ibrahim Najafi says the Tip Top name and its operations, including the Auckland based factory site at Mount Wellington will be maintained. The sale of Tip Top is part of Fonterra’s review of its investment portfolio as it targets on reducing debt by $800 million. Tip Top has had several different owners over the years, after starting off as an ice-cream parlour in Wellington in 1936. By 1962, its Mt Wellington plant had become the Southern Hemisphere’s biggest ice-cream factory. Two years later, Tip Top had expanded and a parent company called General Foods was formed. The company went to Goodman Fielder in 1987, Heinz in 1992, West Australia’s Peters and Brownes in 1997, Kiwi Dairy Co in 2000, and to Fonterra in 2001.