Nestlé Waters strengthens U.S. position with purchase of sparkling Spring Mineral Water Co. in the Chicago area

All press releasesMay 16, 2002

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NESTLÉ WATERS STRENGTHENS U.S. POSITION WITH PURCHASE OF SPARKLING SPRING MINERAL WATER CO. IN THE CHICAGO AREA

  •  Nestlé Waters has acquired the Sparkling Spring Mineral Water Co., a major Home & Office distributor in the Great Lakes region.
  •  Nestlé Waters is strengthening its leadership position in the North American market.
  •  The acquisition offers Nestlé Waters significant synergy opportunities.

Paris (France), 16th May 2002

Nestlé Waters announced today that it has acquired the Sparkling Spring Mineral Water Co. of Vernon Hills, Illinois.

Founded over 100 years ago, Sparkling Spring is a family-owned company, generating 85% of sales through Home & Office delivery and the remaining 15% through retail sales.

With 250 employees at six sites, the company covers a tri-state area that includes south-western Wisconsin, north-eastern Illinois and north-western Indiana.

In 2001, the company sold 86 million litres of water for a total of $33 million.

The acquisition is in line with Nestlé Waters’ strategic development plans for North America, as presented by CEO Frits van Dijk at Nestlé Waters’ annual press conference on the 12th April.

The U.S. division, Nestlé Waters North America Inc., relies on a dynamic internal growth strategy based on 15 strong regional brands (among the strongest in the market) with a solid distribution network, combined with a targeted acquisition program to ensure asset growth and create opportunities for synergy. Nestlé Waters North America, which had a 32.5% share of the U.S. bottled water market in 2001, aims to improve its U.S. leadership position.

The highly competitive U.S. bottled water market shows strong growth prospects, with distribution being a key factor for success. This acquisition improves Nestlé Waters North America’s Home & Office network in the Chicago area while ensuring major cost synergies with its other activities.

Originating in the U.S. at the end of the nineteenth century by the Arrowhead brand, also owned by Nestlé Waters, Home & Office distribution represents more than 40% of the total U.S. bottled water market.

Led by Nestlé Waters North America with over 30 % of the U.S. Home & Office market, Home & Office distribution is based on the idea of service, allowing the company to build a steadily growing base of loyal consumers.

Nestlé Waters is the Nestlé Group’s Water Division. With a 16.3% market share and sales of nearly 5 billion euros (7.5 billion CHF) in 2001, Nestlé Waters leads the bottled water market worldwide. Nestlé Waters North America is the U.S. based operation.

With a total of 72 brands sold in all formats and distribution channels, Nestlé Waters is a global player in the bottled water market, with a presence in 130 countries around the globe.

For further information:
Media Contact: Candy Miller
Tel: +33 (0) 1.41.23.39.74
Fax: +33 (0) 1.41.23.37.67
Email: candy.miller@waters.nestle.com
Press room : www.nestle-waters/press.com

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