A bastion of All-American business is being sold to a South Korean conglomerate for 1.8 billion dollars. Schwan's Company which was begun by Marvin Schwan in Marshall, Minnesota, in March of 1952 is selling a majority interest to CJ CheilJedang, a South Korean food giant.

The Schwan family will keep 20% of the main business, which is manufacturing foods sold in grocery stores and restaurants, and will "keep total control of Schwan’s Home Service, Inc., the delivery business that first launched the company back in 1952". Their management will remain and the company offices will stay in Marshall and Bloomington, Minnesota.

Their home delivery service is what is most familiar to a lot of us in this area. But they also produce a huge number of grocery store foods that may have found their way into your grocery cart at one time or another. Freschetta, Red Baron and Tony's pizza, Pagoda Express Chinese foods, and Mrs. Smith's and Edwards pies are just a few of the brands made by Schwan's foods.

In recent years, Schwan's has seen a decrease in sales, while CJ CheilJedang,  had $14.5 billion in sales last year. Schwan's is the 10th largest privately-held business in Minnesota, employing 12,000 people (a decline from 15,000 employees in 2012).

Paul Schwan, a board member, and son of founder Marvin Schwan, made this comment on the sale, "By becoming a part of an innovative, global team such as CJ CheilJedang, Schwan’s will be positioned to achieve new levels of growth."

Sources: Biz Journals Twin Cities News, Schwan's Company, Vault Company Profiles


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