ConAgra has bought Marie Callenders trademarks

ConAgra has bought Marie Callender's trademarks

ConAgra Foods has snapped up the Marie Callender's trademarks in a deal worth US$57.5m.

The US food maker said yesterday (14 June) that the deal with the trademarks' owner, Marie Callender's Pie Shops, became effective on 9 June.

The announcement came a day after Marie Callender's Pie Shops' owner, restaurant chain Perkins & Marie Callender's, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy.

The deal marks ConAgra's latest interest in the Marie Callender's brand. Last year, ConAgra attained the licence for frozen desserts under the Marie Callender's brand through the acquisition of pie maker American Pie. Back in 1994, ConAgra acquired a licence to sell Marie Callender's frozen meals and pot pies.

"ConAgra Foods has experienced great success as a long-term licensee of the Marie Callender's trademark more than tripling the brand's annual retail sales in the past ten years," said André Hawaux, president of ConAgra's consumer foods division. "Owning the trademark not only allows for greater control of the brand, but gives us the added flexibility to further grow the Marie Callender's brand."

Sales of Marie Callender's products - including frozen meals, pot pies and desserts - amount to $800m a year, ConAgra said.