ST. LOUIS — Nestlé Purina PetCare announced April 1 it has acquired Lily’s Kitchen, a leading producer of natural, premium pet food based in the United Kingdom. The strategic move will bolster Purina’s natural portfolio in Europe, the Middle East and North Africa.

According to data from Euromonitor and Nielsen, natural pet food is one of pet food’s fastest growing segments at 10% year-over-year, representing 7% of global pet food sales in 2019.

Lily’s Kitchen is estimated to be an £85 million brand (equal to $105.5 million USD). Its dry and wet pet food products are available in approximately 6,000 stores in 30 countries and draw the most support from Millennial and Generation Z pet owners.

"We very much respect the powerful brand, strong ethical values and impressive sales growth their experienced management team has achieved,” Bernard Meunier, chief executive officer of Nestlé Purina PetCare’s Zone EMENA. “Natural foods represents an exciting and rapidly expanding part of the pet care market, and this move reflects our desire to act on consumer trends and invest in high-growth categories.”

Lily’s Kitchen is backed by L Catterton, a private equity firm whose funding has helped the natural pet food company expand to new markets in the Middle East and Asia. The brand was founded in 2008 in Fitzrovia, London, United Kingdom, and has since expanded its market across Europe to France, Spain, Italy, the Netherlands, Switzerland and Germany.

“Lily's Kitchen is an excellent fit with our existing brand portfolio, and we look forward to supporting their continued growth with Purina's own world-leading pet care expertise, insight and global resources,” Meunier added.

The European pet food company will continue to operate “as a stand-alone business” in London, according to Nestlé Purina.

“Nestlé Purina acknowledges the importance of Lily’s Kitchen’s values, which was fundamental to moving forward together,” said David Milner, CEO of Lily’s Kitchen. “And while Lily’s Kitchen will continue to operate as a clear challenger brand, it’s a universal truth that both companies love pets and see them as part of the family.

“Nestlé Purina will help us build further brand awareness of our company and accelerate the continued expansion of our global footprint,” Milner said. “Ultimately, working with Nestlé Purina will allow us to get our brilliant food to as many pets as possible around the world.”

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