Nestle is to acquire a majority stake in Guatemalan soups-to-curry producer Malher Group.

The transaction fits in with its strategy to expand in emerging markets and will allow it to strengthen its position in the culinary markets in Guatemala, the Swiss food giant said today (10 August).

“Malher Group and its prestigious brands will consolidate Nestle’s leadership in the culinary category in the Central American Region,” Luis Cantarell, executive vice president of Nestlé’s Zone Americas said. “This association will be very positive as it will complement Nestlé’s research and development expertise with Malher’s best in class product distribution in the region, allowing us to be closer to our consumers.”

Malher manufactures, markets and distributes products including soups, creams, curry, spices, beans and sauces under the Mahler, Dona Mari, Yus and Toki brands.

The company owns two factories and four distribution centres in Guatemala, and also has a presence in other Central American countries, the Caribbean and North America.

The transaction is subject to regulatory approval. Financial details of the agreement have not been disclosed.

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Malher’s board of directors said: “For Malher this is an important step as the combination of Mahler’s and Nestle’s talent will strengthen our company. This association will allow our brands to play in major leagues.”