Cloetta Fazer is mulling further acquisitions to fill gaps in its portfolio after the purchase of Swedish confectionery firm Karamellpojkarna, its CFO told just-food today (1 October).

Curt Petri said Cloetta Fazer, the largest confectioner in the Nordic region could look to fill "the white spots" in its product roster.

"In some segments, we do not have many products, like more refreshment products and we have some white spots in chewing gum, for example. We have plans for that also."

Cloetta Fazer announced the acquisition of Karamellpojkarna for an undisclosed sum this afternoon (1 October). Karamellpojkarna is the third-largest supplier of throat pastilles in Sweden.

Cloetta Fazer said demand for throat pastilles had grown "dramatically" in recent months and predicted that the acquisition would boost its sales in Sweden by 6%.

The company, which accounts for over a fifth of all confectionery sales in the Nordic region, was formed in 2000 when Finnish food group Fazer merged its confectionery business with Swedish competitor Cloetta.

Petri said Cloetta Fazer had a wide product portfolio and had in the past considered whether to offload some brands to sharpen the company's focus.

"We have a huge assortment of products and we are present in many segments," Petri said. "We have of course [considered selling certain brands] in order to be more focused but we have seen difficulties in that. It's often the case that it's easy to sell but difficult to buy a big brand name - more difficult than you can imagine."

Karamellpojkarna, which also makes a range of fruit-flavoured lollipops and toffee products, enjoys annual sales of around SEK70m (US$10.8m). The two companies said Karamellpojkarna's production base in Alingsås would remain open.

Cloetta Fazer has a confectionery market share of 40% in Finland and 24% in Sweden. In the Baltic region, the company is number two in the market.