Frigo expects sales to rise 3% to EUR177m (US$214.67m) this year, as the Unilever-owned Spanish ice cream company steps up marketing efforts to benefit from rising ice cream consumption, Spain’s daily Cinco Dias reported.

Frigo expects volume ice cream sales to rise 4% in 2006, the newspaper said, adding that the company will increase marketing spending by 14% this year. The spending will be targeted to boost the profile of its Magnum, Carte and d’Or Calippo brands.

In 2005, Frigo reported a 5% turnover increase to EUR172m, boosted by a hike in ice cream sales to Spanish homes.

“It was a very positive year and the company won market share in all the ice cream markets where it is present,” Cinco Dias quoted Frigo executives as saying, adding that the company elevated its Spanish market share to 34%.

Employing 650 people, Frigo sells ice cream in Spain and abroad.