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COMPANY REPORT

Ajinomoto Co, Inc acquires Labeyrie Traiteur Surgelés S A S of France
Monday, 31 July, 2017, 08 : 00 AM [IST]
Paris
Ajinomoto Co, Inc has acquired the French frozen food company Labeyrie Traiteur Surgelés S A S (LTS) through its consolidated subsidiary, Ajinomoto Foods Europe S A S (AFE), which signed a share purchase agreement with Labeyrie Fine Foods S A S (LFF), LTS’ parent company, recently.

Through this acquisition, Ajinomoto Co will expand and enhance its business platform for frozen foods in France by combining LTS’ production base and market reach in the home-use sales channel with the Ajinomoto Group’s specialty (product development and production technology capabilities).

Going forward, Ajinomoto Co will further strengthen its consumer foods business in Europe and accelerate growth. Following the share acquisition, which is scheduled to take place in November 2017, the 100 per cent ownership of the equity will be AFE’s.  
 
The frozen food market in Europe is huge. It was worth approximately 41 billion Euro (which, according to Euromonitor 2016, amounted to approximately 5.2 trillion yen) in 2015, and is growing steadily.

The Asian market segment has continued to grow in double digits in recent years, reaching approximately 500 million Euro (which, according to Ajinomoto Co’s estimate for 2016, was approximately 64 billion yen).

The sales of AFE’s consumer foods business in fiscal 2016 totalled approximately 45 million Euro (which was approximately 5.8 billion yen), mainly comprising sales of frozen foods for restaurant use.

LTS is a frozen foods operating subsidiary of LFF, which mainly manufactures and sells chilled foods, such as foie gras and smoked salmon.

Its net sales for fiscal 2016 were approximately 50 million Euro (approximately 6.4 billion yen).

Currently conducting business centred on France, LTS sells Labeyrie products, which are the number one brand in France for high-quality desserts and apéritifs (bite-sized puff pastry), Blini brand products, pies, risotto and other products to major distributors.

With this acquisition, Ajinomoto Co intends to expand and enhance its business platform for frozen foods in France by capitalising on its strength in gyoza products to expand sales of Ajinomoto Group products through LTS’ home-use sales channel, and by selling LTS products through Ajinomoto Co’s existing restaurant-use sales channel.

Ajinomoto Co will also roll out LTS’ high-quality products to other countries.

The planned acquisition price, which is based on an enterprise value of 21 million Euro (approximately 2.7 billion yen) and will include the total of the consideration for all shares of LTS and the receivables that LFF holds for LTS, will be fixed after AFE’s acquisition of all shares of LTS.

In its FY2017-2019 medium-term management plan, Ajinomoto Co has set a key strategy of ensuring growth in its foods products business with a stronger regional portfolio, and aims to be the clear number one in the Asian frozen foods market by rolling out its specialty products in North America and Europe.

It will contribute to the health and well-being of local consumers through the development of product categories adapted to local eating habits and food culture.

The impact of the acquisition on Ajinomoto Co’s business results for fiscal 2017 will be immaterial.
 
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