Unilever to spin off Ben & Jerry’s ice cream business and cut 7,500 jobs globally

Unilever to spin off Ben & Jerry’s ice cream business

Unilever, which has research & development headquarters in Englewood Cliffs and a warehouse in Cresskill, on Tuesday said it is cutting 7,500 office-based jobs globally and overhauling its business model with a spinoff of its Ben & Jerry’s ice cream unit to reduce costs and boost profits.

London-based Unilever said its ice cream business, which also includes Magnum bars, has “distinct characteristics” from its other brands and would benefit from separate ownership to increase growth. It said the split is expected to be completed by the end of next year.

It was not made clear on Tuesday if any of the job cuts will be at the New Jersey locations.

Unilever said it will invest in technology to find efficiencies and avoid duplication that it anticipates will help it save $867 million over the next three years.

“Simplifying our portfolio and driving greater productivity will allow us to further unlock the potential of this business, supporting our ambition to position Unilever as a world-leading consumer goods company delivering strong, sustainable growth and enhanced profitability,” CEO Hein Schumacher said.

Following separation, Unilever will become a simpler, more focused company, operating four business groups across Beauty & Wellbeing, Personal Care, Home Care and Nutrition. These business groups have complementary routes to market, and/or R&D, manufacturing and distribution systems, across both developed markets and Unilever’s extensive emerging markets footprint.