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Barilla to Invest $500 Million to Develop New Pastas, Boost U.S. Presence

Barilla Holding SpA, the world’s biggest pasta maker, plans to invest 400 million euros ($517 million) to develop new types of pasta and boost sales in North America.


“We’re working on product innovation to make different kinds of pasta that will be a very good source of energy,” Vice Chairman Paolo Barilla said in an interview recorded with Bloomberg TV.

The investments, to be spread out over the next three years, will help boost the company’s position in the U.S. and Canadian markets, Barilla said. The Italian company’s U.S. pasta sales rose by almost 12 percent to $500 million last year, when Barilla had a 28 percent market share.

Barilla currently has no plans to enter the Chinese market, the chairman said.

The family-owned pasta maker, which said in May that it was evaluating offers for its Kamps GmbH network of bakery shops, wants to remain in the bakery business, as it fits with Barilla’s other operations, the chairman said. In addition to Germany, Barilla has bakery operations in countries including Italy and France.

Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization rose 19 percent last year to 527 million euros after businesses in the U.S. started to generate a profit. Sales slipped almost 7 percent to 4.2 billion euros after the sale of the Spanish La Bella Easo baked-goods unit.

Barilla said he wants the company to remain a family business.

Source: www.bloomberg.com

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