US frozen bakery products firm Otis Spunkmeyer has announced that it has acquired Van-Merkel, a manufacturer and distributor of frozen cookie products doing business as Chippery.

Founded in 1984 as a retail cookie chain, Chippery now manufacturers frozen cookie dough and thaw-and-serve cookies in a single 97,000 square foot facility in Austin, Texas. Chippery serves national and regional restaurant chains, hotel chains, stadium and sports arenas, schools and other large scale institutions.

"Together, we will market high quality branded and private label products to our core foodservice and retail markets, and operate more efficiently through the integration of certain processes," said John Schiavo, president and chief executive officer of Otis Spunkmeyer. Combined, the companies generate revenues of approximately US$425m.

"This acquisition is consistent with Otis Spunkmeyer's strategy of being the unquestioned leader of the frozen sweet baked goods industry. It is an excellent opportunity to leverage our combined expertise to significantly expand our existing market presence," said Schiavo.

Otis Spunkmeyer makes frozen cookie dough, pre-baked muffins and other hand held sweet baked goods to foodservice accounts and food retailers.