Weis family set up Fruito owner in 1957

Weis family set up Fruito owner in 1957

Magnum and Ben & Jerry's owner Unilever has moved to add to its ice cream business with a deal to buy Australian firm Weis.

Unilever, which markets ice cream in Australia under brands that also include Streets, said Weis manufactures "a unique range" of products including bars, frozen yogurt and dairy-free lines.

Family-owned Weis Bars was formed by the Weis family in 1957. Around 30% of the company's business is outside Australia, taking in markets including the US, Japan, South Korea and Malaysia.

Financial details of the deal were not disclosed. Unilever said Weis ice creams would continue to be made in its own factory in Toowoomba in Queensland.

"This acquisition will bring Weis the benefits of scale, strong market access and ice cream category expertise to help take the business to the next level in its growth," Clive Stiff, the CEO of Unilever's operations in Australia and New Zealand, said.

Managing director Julie Weis said: "Our family made this decision because Unilever demonstrated their understanding of our brand, our products and how important our people and the Toowoomba manufacturing site are in ensuring Weis' success into the future. In addition Unilever's scale will enable greater market access and growth that will provide opportunities for our extended Weis family of staff, suppliers, customers and of course our wonderful consumers."