Italian chocolate maker Ferrero is teaming up with consumer goods giant Unilever in a new range of ice cream through the Kinder brand to be launched in select European countries in 2018.

“This collaboration combines Ferrero’s sense of innovation and creativity with the deep knowledge of the market and Unilever’s great expertise in the ice category,” the privately-owned maker of Kinder Surprise children’s chocolates and Ferrero Rocher said in a statement. 

Both companies collaborated in the product’s development, which will use the “characteristic ingredients of Kinder” and the “know-how” of Unilever, the Anglo-Dutch maker of Magnum Ice Cream and Ben & Jerry’s. 

The new ice cream range will be available in France, Germany, Austria and Switzerland next year. 

Giovanni Ferrero took on the role of “strategy focused” chairman in March after relinquishing the position of chief executive to Lapo Civiletti. Mr Ferrero will focus on “long-term strategies, new business directions and breakthrough innovation”, the company said then.