Hain Celestial completes alliance stage

by Jeff Gelski
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MELVILLE, N.Y. — The Hain Celestial Group, Inc. has completed the first stage of its alliance with Yeo Hiap Seng Ltd., a Singapore-based natural food and beverage company listed on the Singapore Stock Exchange.

The companies exchanged $2 million in equity investments in each other on Tuesday, which resulted in the issuance of 100,482 shares of Hain Celestial common stock to Y.H.S. and the issuance of 1,326,938 ordinary shares of Y.H.S. to Hain Celestial.

The investments were pursuant to an August agreement between the two companies. The investments complete the first stage of the alliance. Hain Celestial and Y.H.S. are pursuing joint interests in marketing and distribution of food and beverages and product development.

Hain Celestial, based in Melville, offers natural and organic food and personal care products. The company generated operating free cash flow of $25.1 million for fiscal year 2005, a 20% increase from $20.9 million in the previous fiscal year. On Sept. 1 Hain Celestial gave fiscal year 2006 guidance of $650 million to $670 million in sales and earnings of 98c to $1.05 per share.

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