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Wm. Wrigley Jr. Company

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Title: Wm. Wrigley Jr. Company  
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Subject: Wrigley Field, South West England, Pasadena, California, Ancel Keys, Berkshire Hathaway, Western Reserve Academy, Lamar Odom, List of chewing gum brands, Near North Side, Chicago, Skittles (confectionery)
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Wm. Wrigley Jr. Company

William Wrigley Jr. Company
Type Subsidiary
Industry Food processing
Founded Chicago, Illinois, US (1891)
Founder(s) William Wrigley, Jr.
Headquarters Wrigley Building
Near North Side, Chicago, US
Key people William Wrigley, Jr. II, Chairman
Martin Radvan, CEO
Products Juicy Fruit, Wrigley's Spearmint, Doublemint, more...
Revenue Increase$5.389 billion (2007)
Net income Increase$961.9 million (2009)
Employees 16,000
Parent Mars, Incorporated (2008— )

The William Wrigley Jr. Company is a company headquartered in the GIC (Global Innovation Center) in Goose Island, Chicago, Illinois.[1] The company was founded on April 1, 1891, originally selling products such as soap and baking powder. In 1892, William Wrigley, Jr., the company's founder, began packaging chewing gum with each can of baking powder. The chewing gum eventually became more popular than the baking powder itself and Wrigley's reoriented the company to produce the popular chewing gum.

The company currently sells its products in more than 180 countries and districts and maintains 140 factories in various countries and districts, including the United States, Mexico, Australia, the United Kingdom, Canada, Spain, New Zealand, the Philippines, Czech Republic, Germany, South Africa, Argentina, Tanzania, Tunisia, Somalia, North Korea (the only US enterprise there) France, Kenya, China (including Taiwan), India, Poland, and Russia.

In 2005, Wrigley purchased the Life Savers and Altoids businesses from Kraft Foods for US$1.5 billion.[2] On January 23, 2007, Wrigley signed a purchase agreement to acquire an 80 percent initial interest in A. Korkunov for $300 million with the remaining 20 percent to be acquired over time. On April 28, 2008, it was announced that Mars, Incorporated would acquire Wrigley for approximately $23 billion.[3] Financing for the transaction was provided by Berkshire Hathaway, Goldman Sachs and JPMorgan. Berkshire Hathaway holds a minority equity investment in the Wrigley subsidiary.

The Wrigley Building on Michigan ave, one of Chicago's most well known landmarks on the Magnificent Mile, still belongs to the company, but has not been Wrigley's headquarters since 2005.

Corporate leadership

1891–1932: William Wrigley Jr.

In 1891, 29 year-old William Wrigley Jr. (1861–1932) came to Chicago from Philadelphia with $32 and the idea to start a business selling Wrigley’s Scouring Soap. Wrigley offered premiums as an incentive to buy his soap, such as baking powder. Later in his career, he switched to the baking powder business, in which he began offering two packages of chewing gum for each purchase of a can of baking powder. The popular premium, chewing gum, began to seem more promising than the actual baking powder.[4] Thus, in 1893, Wrigley launched his chewing gum brands Juicy Fruit and Spearmint, followed by Doublemint in 1914.[2]

1932–1961: Philip K. Wrigley

After the death of William Wrigley Jr., his son Philip K. Wrigley (1894–1977) assumed his father’s position as CEO of the Wrigley Company. Wrigley is most well-known for his unusual move to support US troops and protect the reputation of the Wrigley brand during World War II, in which he dedicated the entire output of Wrigley’s Spearmint, Doublemint, and Juicy Fruit to the US Armed Forces. Wrigley launched the "Remember this Wrapper" ad campaign to keep the Wrigley brands on the minds of the customers during times of wartime rationing.[2]

1961–1999: William Wrigley III

In 1961, Philip K. Wrigley handed control to his son, William Wrigley III (1933–1999). Wrigley led a strategic global expansion through the establishment of Wrigley facilities in nine new countries.[2] On June 26, 1974, a Marsh Supermarket in Troy, Ohio installed the first bar code scanning equipment. The first product to be scanned using a Universal Product Code (UPC) bar code was a 10-pack of Wrigley's Juicy Fruit gum.[5] (This pack of gum is now on display at the Smithsonian Institution's National Museum of American History.) During the late '70s and early '80s, Wrigley began advertising a new gum, Extra, which followed the new trend of sugar-free gums in the US.[2]

1999–2006: William Wrigley, IV

William "Bill" Wrigley IV (1963— ), following the death of Wrigley III (his father), led the sugar-free gum campaign across Europe, Australia, Spain, India, and China.[2] In 2005, Kraft Foods sold the Life Savers and Altoids businesses to Wrigley in exchange for $1.5 billion as part of a reorganization plan.[6] Wrigley led the establishment of the Wrigley Science Institute (WSI) in 2006 to study the oral health benefits of gum chewing. The WSI investigates the effects of gum chewing on weight management, stress relief, concentration, and oral health.[2]

2006–2008: William Perez

On October 23, 2006, William D. Perez (1948— ) succeeded Bill Wrigley as CEO. He was the first person outside the Wrigley family to head the company. In 2007, the company debuted 5 Gum in the US. The 5 Gum brand was marketed using cinematic TV commercials portraying “What it feels like to chew 5 Gum”. Perez led the efforts of improving slimmer packaging (Slim Pack) with flavor improvements across both Extra and Wrigley brands.[2]

2008–2011: Dushan “Duke” Petrovich

Dushan Petrovich (1954— ) succeeded Perez. In 2009, Wrigley’s Global Innovation Center received the LEED Gold Certification through Wrigley’s commitment to global sustainability. In the 2010 Olympic Games in Vancouver, British Columbia, Wrigley was the Official Confectionery Supplier of the games, in which the company sported Olympic-themed packs and products.[2]

2011— : Martin Radvan

Martin Radvan (19??— ) became the CEO of the Wrigley Company after Petrovich. He has over 25 years of experience at Wrigley. He is responsible for the company’s worldwide strategy, operations and business performance.[7]


  • The Wrigley Company Limited
  • Amurol Confections Company
  • Northwestern Flavors, LLC

Changes in gum

In some countries, xylitol is used to sweeten gum instead of aspartame. By avoiding sugar, the chance of tooth decay is lowered, since the sugar otherwise used may turn into acid after chewing the gum. It is also claimed that in chewing, it may help to remove food residues. Xylitol based products are allowed by the US Food and Drug Administration to make the medical claim that they do not promote dental cavities.[8]

New product

Wrigley temporarily halted production and sales of its new Alert energy gum as the Food and Drug Administration investigates the safety of caffeinated-food products.[9]



United States
The Wrigley Company Ltd., Estover, Plymouth, UK

Additional products

See also

Chicago portal
Illinois portal
Companies portal


External links

  • Official website
    • Press releases
  • Company profile at Yahoo
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