MARKHAM, Ont. — International Franchising Inc. (IFI) has acquired Sweet Jesus — the Toronto-born ice-cream chain known for its hand-crafted “pimped-out” soft-serve ice cream.
The acquisition of Sweet Jesus will add a successful, highly-regarded brand with a loyal customer base to the company’s portfolio of frozen-dessert brands, which includes Yogen Früz, Swensen’s Ice Cream, Yeh! Yogurt and Yogurty’s.
Sweet Jesus, which was founded in 2015, is one of the fastest-growing ice-cream concepts with 20 units in Canada, the U.S. and the Middle East, where it operates under the name Sweet Salvation.
“Sweet Jesus is a powerful brand with a rich social-media following that resonates especially with millennials,” says Aaron Serruya, president of IFI. “With this transaction, IFI is adding a brand that has a distinctive position within a compelling segment and strong U.S. and international prospects for growth. We look forward to taking an already very strong brand and accelerating its pace of growth and opening new units in Canada, the U.S. and around the world. As Sweet Jesus becomes part of the IFI family, we believe we can deliver growth and opportunities for all of our stakeholders, including our valued employees and franchisees.”
Through the acquisition, Jeff Young, former Chief Development Officer of Sweet Jesus, has been appointed the brand’s president under IFI.
“I’m proud of the results the Sweet-Jesus team has achieved since its inception,” says Young. “The Serruya Family are industry leaders in the frozen-dessert category and have recognized the opportunity for exceptional unit growth in the future — particularly in the U.S. and around the world. The outlook of the Sweet-Jesus brand has never looked brighter and this transaction will deliver immediate and certain value to all Sweet-Jesus shareholders.”