Global confectionery group Katjes International has grown its stake in UK sweets brand Candy Kittens take a majority share in the company.

Founded in 2012 by Edward Williams and Jamie Laing, who featured on Made in Chelsea, Candy Kittens has grown to generate retail sales of over £10m.

The brand’s products are made without gelatine making them 100% vegetarian, as well as gluten-free, and free from artificial flavours or colourings.

Candy Kittens said the deepening of its partnership with Katjes would give the company the commercial muscle to fulfil their ambitious plans to grow retail sales towards £50m and to be available in every store in the country.

Williams commented: “We are delighted to announce our partnership with Katjes. It symbolises a significant step in the Candy Kittens story, whilst also providing the recognition that validates the hard work and determination our team has demonstrated over the last 7 years.

“I know we have the products and brand to change the game in confectionery, and we couldn’t be happier to be working with a company that shares our vision for a more sustainable future.”

Bastian Fassin, managing shareholder of Katjes International, added: “With the acquisition of the majority stake in Candy Kittens, we continue to pursue our strategy of investing in strong brands in Europe. With its natural and vegetarian fruit gums for adults, the company has been ahead of confectionery trends and is growing significantly faster than the market.”

Candy Kittens sold a “significant” minority stake to German confectionery company Katjes in January 2018.