US confectionery giant Mars has said it is interested in acquiring Brazilian chocolate maker Garoto from Swiss food giant Nestlé.

Mars said it had told Brazil’s antitrust regulator Cade of its intention to take part in the sale of Garoto, reported Reuters. Earlier this year Cade ordered Nestlé to sell Garoto, which it acquired two years ago in a deal worth around US$230m, because of competition concerns.

“There is lots of speculation in the market these days, so we want to formalise our interest, and reinforce our commitment to investing in Brazilian industry,” Filipe Ferreira, an executive director at Mars, was quoted by Reuters as saying.

Mars, which makes M&M’s, Skittles, Twix bars and Snickers bars in Brazil, said it had less than 20% of the country’s chocolate and confectionery market, as well as a capacity to invest.

Nestlé has said it may be willing to sell of some of its brands in order to keep Garoto.