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Co. evolution.

MD Foods Re-Organizes

MD Foods Plc, the fourth largest dairy company in the UK, is being restructured. A new integrated marketing operation is being created, which will offer a single range of products.

Cravendale Ltd and MD Foods Ltd were previously run separately, and they are now being replaced by two divisions - MD Foods Manufacturing and Distribution Division and MD Foods Sales and Marketing Division. These new divisions will now operate across the group's entire dairy product range, except fresh milk. Cravendale will continue as a brand name only.

Meyer Mojonnier Merges with Figgie

Figgie International Inc has announced that Meyer Mojonnier (George J Meyer) Co has been integrated with Figgie Packaging Systems. This step will enable Figgie Packaging Systems to serve key global market segments with world-class technology and customer service, whilst offering single source capability in packaging equipment, integrated packaging lines and complete turnkeys systems.

Richard Barkley continues as president of Figgie Packaging Systems, whilst Raymond Roberts, previously sales and marketing director for Figgie Packaging in London, has been named as vice president, sales and marketing, non beverage, and George Freeman, formerly sales director for Meyer Mojonnier in the UK, has been appointed as vice president, sales and marketing, beverage.

Crown Chemtech Formed

Crown Iron Works Co, manufacturers of edible oil extraction plant of the USA, have acquired a controlling interest in a new UK-based joint venture operation. Crown Chemtech Ltd has been formed from the food equipment division of TMCI Chemtech Ltd of Reading, with the TMCI group remaining as the other joint venture partner.

Readers may know there is another Crown joint venture company in the UK - Europa Crown Ltd of Hull. This company markets the entire range of Crown's product lines and has total in-house contracting capability.

At the same time the name of TMCI Chemtech Ltd has been changed to TMCI (UK) Ltd and the remaining divisions of the old company will be using this name.

Linpac Company in Prague

Linpac Plastics International Ltd is currently launching a new trading company near Prague in Czechoslovakia. This new company, Linpac Ceskoslovensko Sro, will be marketing a wide range of expanded polystyrene foam meat and produce trays, stretch films and other types of packaging.

Marshalls Buy Premier Poultry

The Marshall Food Group is expanding southwards by purchasing a fully integrated operation in North Wales and the Midlands. The company being purchased is Premier Poultry Ltd, a subsidiary of Hillsdown Holdings Plc.

This deal will increase Marshall's turnover by around 25 percent and add 12 breeding farms, 15 broiler farms, a hatchery and a recently refurbished 93,000sq ft processing plant at Sandycroft.

Fisher Food Sales Formed

Albert Fisher Europe's Food Processing Division has created a new sales entity called Fisher Food Sales, which will provide a structured national sales force encompassing a number of companies within the division. These include Evedale Foods Ltd and Fisher Quality Foods, the latter comprising Stratford-upon-Avon Foods, Rowats Ltd and Unimerchants Ltd.

Headed by John Lemon, commercial director of Fisher Quality Foods, Fisher Food Sales will provide a focused resource for these companies, covering three market sectors: retail multiples, food service and food manufacturing.

Hazlewood Consolidates in Ice Cream

Creamary Fare has now been integrated within Hazlewood Frozen Foods. Till now it has still been trading separately since its acquisition by the Hazlewood Group back in 1987.

This integration will add 150 different bulk ice cream varieties to Hazlewood Frozen Foods' portfolio of frozen foods, and more than 100 gateaux, yogurt, dairy products and speciality desserts.

As part of the operational merger, all sales, distribution and orders are now being operated centrally from Hazlewood Frozen Foods' headquarters in Wrexham, with the exception of Creamary Fare 'Direct Deliveries' business.

Paul Probert has been appointed as national sales manager to spearhead the development of both new and existing markets in conjunction with the Hazlewood sales and marketing team.

Star to Acquire Foilwraps

Star Aluminium Co Ltd is currently completing negotiations to acquire the Aluminium foil converting business of Foilwraps Flexible Packaging Ltd. The addition of this Northampton-based business will consolidate Star's position in the foil conversion market.

In due course Foilwraps' equipment will be integrated into Star Aluminium's Converting Department at Bridgnorth.

Cheese Family Name to Disappear

One of the West Country's oldest family names in cheese-making is set to disappear when T W Clothier & Sons becomes Wyke Farms. This name change is part of a promotional campaign being designed to create greater awareness of the Wyke Farms' brand.

Lees Confectionery is Scottish Again

Lees of Scotland Ltd has returned to Scottish ownership, just 16 months after being sold to Northumbrian Fine Foods Plc.

This |pounds~1.2m. acquisition has been made by Raymond Miquel, who was formerly with Bell's Whisky, and Gordon Manson, a corporate lawyer. Having formed the Claymore Group last September, they aim to build a Scottish-based group that will be mainly in the food and drink business.

This deal includes the purchase of Heather Cameron Ltd, the Lees' subsidiary that is also located in Coatbridge and Lees' other brands, Fullers and Gainsborough, and Lewis Wright Distribution Ltd based at Carluke.

Borthwicks Sells Last Meat Business

Borthwicks have announced the sale of their Ringmer Abattoir to Anglo Dutch Meats (Charing) Ltd. The consideration involved is |pounds~135,000.

Italian Acquisition for Linpac

Linpac Plastics International Ltd has announced an Italian acquisition which completes its programme targeted at covering Europe.

Currently, Pro-di-Pak manufactures a range of expanded polystyrene foam meat and produce trays at a 4350sq m factory in Verona. This plant will now trade as Linpac Plastics Verona. Dr Francesco Riva will continue to manage the factory for Linpac.

Name Change for Transon

The Andover-based heat exchange manufacturer, Transon Heat Engineering Plc, has changed its name to Associated Heat Engineering Plc and will continue to trade from the same premises.

Unigate to Acquire Glass Glover

Unigate Plc has entered into an agreement to acquire the entire share capital of Glass Glover Group Plc for a total consideration of |pounds~54m.

As readers will remember, Glass Glover, whose principal business is the provision of contract warehousing and distribution services, was the subject of a management buyout in 1988. Plans were in hand to refloat the company on the stock exchange but this Unigate deal has pre-emptied that move.

Glass Glover now operates 15 major distribution depots handling in excess of 185 million cases per year. In total these depots comprise nearly 2 million sq ft of warehousing with 15.7 million cu ft of temperature controlled storage.

This business will continue to be run by its existing management team as a division of Wincanton Ltd.

Joint Venture by Unilever and BSN

Unilever and BSN, France's largest food company, are forming a joint venture company to develop and market a new range of products combining ice cream and yogurt. Based in Paris, it will be equally owned and use existing facilities owned by the two partners.

As readers will appreciate, Unilever is the world's largest maker of ice cream and BSN is the largest yogurt producer.

We understand the joint venture will concentrate on France and Spain to begin with, then sales will be expanded to other countries gradually. Marketing will rely heavily on the use of the two companies' leading brand names.

Dumas now John Lusty

The Dumas group was formed as recently as October 1991 after the UPL Group acquired a food distribution business. Then plans for a restructuring, involving the acquisition of a food company, were abandoned a year later.

Now, we understand that Arne Berbrant is to hand over his chief executive role to David Hamp-Adams, although he is to remain on the Board as a non executive chairman. Nicholas Wilkes of Vanguard Foods is joining the Board as business development director and Avinash Vazirani is now operations director. Ian Fenn and David Young have left the Board.

The company is also changing its name to the John Lusty Group.

Grace to Expand in Eastern Europe

W R Grace & Co is to expand its business in Eastern Europe. Recently it has established subsidiaries in the Czech Republic, Hungary and Poland. These subsidiaries have offices in the capital cities of Prague, Budapest and Warsaw, and the Prague office will also serve their interests in Slovakia.

Unigate Acquiring Clifford Foods

Unigate Plc has made an agreed bid for all the issued share capital of Clifford Foods Plc. The total cost involved is |pounds~50.4m. but this offer is subject to a number of conditions, primarily no referral to the Monopolies and Mergers Commission and the acceptance by 90 percent or more of the shareholders. At present Unigate has received acceptances in respect of 51.8 percent of the voting shares and 2 percent of the non voting shares.

Cliffords principal activities are the processing and distribution of milk, milk-based products, fruit juices and drinks from Kidlington and Bracknell through depots in five counties. They also own three speciality companies: Morton Foods the producers of batter and crumb coatings; Roy's Quality Foods the producers of chilled convenience foods; and Danby's Foods the suppliers of frozen ready-meals.

Iceland to Take-Over Part of Littlewoods

Iceland Frozen Foods is to take-over Littlewoods food retailing operations. This move is taking place because Littlewoods have decided to withdraw from this market area. We understand that Iceland has agreed to take-over the foodhalls in 48 of their 127 stores and will pay rent based on the turnover achieved. It is expected that some |pounds~20m. will be spent in re-equipping these premises.

Albert Fisher Buys Hunter Saphir

In an agreed bid, the Albert Fisher food processing and distribution group has acquired the Hunter Saphir fresh produce, herbs and spices company. The cash involved was around |pounds~29m.

It is understood that Nicholas Saphir will join the Albert Fisher Board as head of a combined European fresh produce division. Also the newly rebuilt British Pepper and Spice factory at Northampton is likely to be sold.

Parmalat Moving into Hungary

Reports tell us that Parmalat, the Italian dairy foods group, is purchasing 60 percent of Fejertej, the Hungarian dairy foods group. We understand that Parmalat has the right to increase its stake in the Hungarian company within six months should employees not take up options to buy share at discounted prices.

Another Unigate Purchase

We hear that Unigate Plc has agreed to purchase some CWS milk businesses covering more than 300 milk rounds in London, the South-East and Cornwall. Included in the deal is a processing dairy in Penryn and four depots.

We understand this deal with the Co-operative Wholesale Society is worth around |pounds~17m.

Borthwicks Sells to Hygrade

Borthwicks Plc have announced the sale of Borthwicks Consumer Products Ltd, the manufacturers of fresh ready-to-cook meals and convenience foods, for |pounds~275,000 in cash. The purchaser is Hygrade Foods Ltd.

We understand that the freehold factory situated at Bow in East London does not form part of the deal.

Quaker Selling Sutherlands

Reports indicate that the Quaker Oats Co is selling its Sutherlands Food Division, the makers of savoury spreads and pastes. The purchaser is C Shippam, a subsidiary company of Pet Inc.
COPYRIGHT 1993 Food Trade Press Ltd.
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Title Annotation:mergers and acquisitions in the food processing industry
Publication:Food Trade Review
Date:Feb 1, 1993
Previous Article:A focus on hygiene at Food Manufacturing Technology.
Next Article:Ingredients.

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