The local arm of US consumer goods giant Sara Lee has sold its Horvath Rozi spice and salt division to spice company Kotanyi Hungaria.

Kotanyi, a wholly owned subsidiary of Austrian company Johann Kotanyi, has said that it will retain its own label range of spices in parallel with the Horvath Rozi range. The salt division will not be kept however.

Last year, the company posted sales of HUF1.7bn (US$6.2m). With the acquisition, however, figures from market research company GfK show that Kotanyi now controls 60% of the local market and this year it predicts a turnover of HUF2.7bn.

Eva Godor, company spokeswoman for Sara Lee, told Econews that the divestiture will allow the company to focus on its core businesses of coffee, tea, household products and cosmetics.

Sara Lee has invested HUF10bn in Hungary since 1991, and the company controls 40% of the Hungarian coffee market. The bulk of its turnover is generated by food sales, reaching around HUF20bn a year, according to daily newspaper Vilaggazdasag.