Plans to unify its Snacks headquarters have been on the cards since the acquisition of Snyder’s-Lance in 2018. The business unit currently operates across multiple office locations, mainly split between New Jersey, North Carolina and Connecticut.
Underpinned by expected cost savings, Campbell has made the decision to go ahead and over the next three years will be closing its Snacks offices in Charlotte and Connecticut, moving the 330 ‘displaced’ roles into its Camden campus, its home since 1869.
Campbell’s president and CEO Mark Clouse called the decision ‘a difficult one’, but emphasised the company will maintain its two-division operating model, with each unit having distinct sections on the campus that support their respective identities and business focus.
A great place to work
Following a $50m upgrade, expected to start in March, the campus will house a new gathering centre, a Snacks R&D centre and a pilot plant. Communal workspaces, meeting and multi-purpose rooms will be enhanced to support a variety of work styles and will include a day care, café, fitness centre and other services. It will accommodate more than 1,600 employees.
Campbell last completed a major expansion and renovation of its campus in 2010 at a cost of around $132m.
“We are thrilled to invest in our people, our facilities and our Camden community, which Campbell has called home for more than 150 years,” said Clouse.
“We remain committed to our two-division operating model and are confident that being together in one headquarters is the best way for us to continue building a culture that unlocks our full growth potential. This investment will ensure Campbell remains a great place to work and a compelling destination for top talent.”
The consolidation is expected to yield annual cost savings of up to $10m by 2026. The savings will be reinvested back in the business and to increase the Snacks division’s margins.
In December 2017, Campbell Soup agreed to acquire Snyder’s-Lance, Inc. for $50 per share in an all-cash transaction (representing an enterprise value of approximately $6.1bn), merging it with Pepperidge Farm to form Campbell Snacks.
The division’s portfolio includes much-loved brands like Cape Cod, Goldfish, Kettle Brand, Lance, Late July, Milano, Pepperidge Farm and Snyder’s of Hanover, among others.
In the three months to 30 October 2022, the unit posted a 15% increase in net sales to $1.12bn.
The right thing to do
Employees from the Charlotte and Norwalk offices will relocate to Camden in phases starting in mid-2023. No commercial roles are being eliminated, however, for those choosing not to relocate, Campbell will provide severance benefits commensurate with level and years of service.
The closures will not impact Campbell’s other operations in Connecticut and North Carolina.
Campbell will continue to operate its Pepperidge Farm bakery in Bloomfield, which employs nearly 400 people and has plans to expand in 2023. The company will also maintain its manufacturing and distribution centres in Pineville and Maxton in Charlotte, which collectively employ almost 4,000 employees.
“We have a long history in Connecticut and North Carolina and will continue to have key operations in both states,” said Clouse.
“The decision to close these offices was difficult but it is the right thing to do for our business and culture.”
He added that unifying most of the company’s office-based employees in one location provides the greatest benefits for the business and will provide the Snacks division with significantly improved facilities, resources and services than those that exist in Charlotte or Norwalk.
“Unifying the company in one headquarters increases connectivity, collaboration and provides enhanced career opportunities for our team,” said Clouse.
Added New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy, “Campbell is an iconic New Jersey company, and I’m pleased with their commitment to invest and grow in our state.
“This plan will create jobs, stimulate economic development, and strengthen Campbell’s roots in Camden where their efforts have played an essential role in the continued transformation of the city.”