FrieslandCampina to Acquire Ivory Coast Dairy Business from Olam

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Dutch farming cooperative, Royal FrieslandCampina, one of the five largest dairy companies in the world yesterday disclosed plans to buy the Ivory Coast dairy businesses of Singapore’s Olam International. FrieslandCampina has presence in Nigeria and Ghana.

According to Reuters, the acquisition fits into the growth strategy of leading dairy producers to boost activities in emerging markets in Africa and Asia, and counterbalance more limited long-term growth in developed markets.

In July, France’s Danone bought a 40 per cent stake in Kenya’s Brookside, east Africa’s top dairy producer, as part of plans to expand in new markets while growth is weak in Europe.

Last week, New Zealand’s Fonterra, the world’s largest dairy producer, said it would take a stake in Chinese baby food and formula maker Beingmate.

In separate statements, Olam said FrieslandCampina was paying $18.7 million cash for the business and $6.3 million for the right to use Olam’s “Pearl” trademark in certain African countries.

Olam said it expected to book a one-off pre-tax gain of about $10 million when the transaction is completed in the second quarter of its 2015 financial year, or the three months ending December 31, 2014.

The acquisition includes a dairy production facility in the Ivorian commercial capital Abidjan that employs 80 people. It processes local fresh milk and milk powder into sweetened condensed milk and evaporated milk for the local market.

“The acquisition enables us to further strengthen our position in West Africa,” said FrieslandCampina chief executive, Ceest Hart.

Olam said the sale was part of a plan to focus its dairy products portfolio on upstream and midstream parts of the dairy business. It has dairy farms in Uruguay and Russia.

FrieslandCampina has more than 21,000 employees and annual revenues of more than €11 billion  ($14.4 billion).

The acquisition would also increase the presence of FrieslandCampina in the West African country, where it is already marketing its brand Bonnet Rouge. The product portfolio comprises sweetened condensed milk and evaporated milk.

The production facility is located in Abidjan, the primary economic center of Côte d’Ivoire. The production facility in Abidjan processes local fresh milk and milk powder into sweetened condensed milk and evaporated milk which are sold on the local market under the brand name ‘Pearl’. Source: This Day Live

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