Sara Lee Corporation (NYSE: SLE) has chosen Hillshire Brands Company as the new name for its North American business. Hillshire Brands will be listed on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol “HSH.”
Sara Lee will become two independent pure-play, publicly traded companies June 28, 2012. Hillshire Brands will focus on meat-centric food products and foodservice operations, and D E Master Blenders 1753 will focus on international coffee and tea. Hillshire Brands will include several popular consumer brands including Jimmy Dean, Hillshire Farm, Ball Park, Aidells, Gallo Salame, and State Fair.
“We needed a name and identity that captures the potential of this new organization,” said Sean Connolly, chief executive officer of Sara Lee North American Retail and Foodservice, who will become CEO of Hillshire Brands. “Hillshire Brands represents our strong heritage in quality and great taste, as well as our ambitions for growing our portfolio of iconic brands in the future.”
The Hillshire name was inspired by the Hillshire Farm brand, which Sara Lee acquired in 1971. Friedrich “Fritz” Bernegger founded Hillshire Farm in New London WI.
After the spin-off, Hillshire Brands’ Foodservice division will continue to be known as Sara Lee Foodservice.
The company has also adopted a new visual identity to help position Hillshire Brands as a provider of meat-centric brands and snacks—but also create a distinction between the new corporate name and the Hillshire Farm brand. The identity will be instilled throughout the organization through signage, stationery, and a branded office space under construction in Chicago. To assist in crafting a brand image that accurately reflects its new strategic direction and name, the company engaged branding firm Duffy & Partners.
For more information, visit www.saralee.com.