Foster’s, Vegemite and other iconic Australian companies, who owns them now?
August 28, 2014
Happy Little Vegemite
WE GREW up with these iconic Australian brands and consumed many of them every day.
From Foster’s to Aeroplane Jelly to Vegemite, Australians loved them.
They became great Aussie brands the world decided to buy, and their names became known across the globe.
What happened to our great Aussie brands and who owns them now?
Downing a Foster’s or VB after a hard day at work was once an Aussie tradition. While we still love a VB, these days you’re more likely to find Foster’s in a pub in London than Melbourne. The Poms now own Foster’s too. In 2011 British multinational brewer SAB Miller took over ownership of the Foster’s Group.
For generations of Australians, there was nothing better for lunch on a winter’s day than a tin of Rosella tomato soup. The tasty soup was the perfect thing to warm you up on the coldest of days and a pie wasn’t the same without a blob of Rosella sauce.
In 2012, Rosella’s owner was placed in receivership and it looked like the great brand may be lost. But Sabrands Australia stepped forward and we can continue to enjoy Rosella.
PETERS AND STREETS
As a kid you begged your mum to let you have Bubble O’ Bill or Choc Wedge. On a hot summer’s day there was nothing better. Streets and Peters were two iconic rival brands and both are now owned by foreign entities. Streets is now owned by Anglo — Dutch multinational consumer goods company Unilever. Peters is owned by European food firm R&R Ice Cream.
Cottee’s cordial ad
“My dad picks the fruit that goes to Cottee’s to make the cordial that I like best,” one of the most classic lines in an Australian television commercial. The brand began when Spencer Milton Cottee started making the drink Passiona in the 1920s. By the 1960s Cottee’s Cordial was an essential drink for every kid. It is now owned by Japanese company Asahi Breweries, Ltd.
Few things are more Australian than tucking into vegemite toast for breakfast. It is perhaps our most iconic brand.
Developed in Melbourne from brewers yeast in Vegemite became a favourite on Australian breakfast tables. Vegemite was originally Fred Walker Company, which became Kraft Walker Foods. It is now owned by US confectionary company Mondelēz International, but is still manufactured in Port Melbourne. The Kraft logo was only recently removed from the label.
Grandma loved them with her cup of tea and you loved to help yourself to her supply. Arnott’s biscuits have been part of Australian life since 1865 when Scottish immigrant William Arnott opened a bakery in Newcastle. Tim Tams and Scotch Fingers were among the favourite biscuits. Arnott’s remained Australian owned until 1997 when the Campbell Soup Company of North America purchased it in full.
Australians have grown up eating Uncle Tobys porridge on winters mornings. Since the 1800s the cereal maker has been a part of Aussie life and is famous for supporting iron man events. It is now owned by Cereal Partners Worldwide SA, which is a joint venture between General Mills and Nestlé.
Long before we kicked off the day with a skinny soy latte with two Australians enjoyed a cup of Bushells tea with breakfast. In 1883 Alfred Bushell began manufacturing tea and the tradition has continued. Like Streets it is now owned by Anglo — Dutch multinational consumer goods company Unilever.
It made its Olympic debut way back in 1932 and ever since Speedo has been intrinsically linked to Australian gold medals. Speedo began manufacturing swimmers five years earlier in Sydney. By the 1960s athletes from around the world were winning gold in Speedos. British sportswear firm Pentland Group acquired Speedo in the early 1990s.
Generations of Aussie kids liked it for dinner and liked it for tea. Aeroplane Jelly was Australian favourite. It began in the 1920s in Sydney and was named after planes because they were an exciting innovation at the time. The first batches were was created in a bath with gelatine and sugar. It is now owned by McCormick Foods Australia, a subsidiary of American company McCormick & Company.