Hain Celestial and YHS expand alliance

by FoodBusinessNews.net Staff
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MELVILLE, N.Y. — The Hain Celestial Group Inc. is expanding investment agreements between the company and Yeo Hiap Seng Ltd. and subsidiary YHS. YHS is a natural food and beverage company based in Singapore.

The plan is for the companies to exchange $6 million in equity investments in each other, which will result in issuing 196,464 shares of Hain Celestial stock to YHS plus the issuance of 4,044,800 ordinary shares of YHS — less than 1% of outstanding shares — to Hain Celestial.

YHS also has given Hain Celestial the option to acquire up to 5% of its issued and outstanding shares. Meanwhile, Hain Celestial is giving YHS the option to acquire shares equal in value to the investment Hain Celestial makes.

"After extensive research and development, Hain Celestial expects to launch several co-branded products with Yeo’s later this year as part of our global strategic expansion," said Irwin D. Simon, president and chief executive officer of Hain Celestial. "Although this is a complex marketplace, we expect that our investments in YHS will provide us with a strong foothold in Asia through Yeo’s infrastructure, as we expand our natural and organic products in the world’s largest and most populous continent. We believe that these investments provide tremendous growth opportunities for both YHS and Hain Celestial."

In September 2005, the two companies exchanged $2 million in equity investments in each other. This resulted in the issuance of 100,482 shares of Hain Celestial’s stock to YHS and issuing 1,326,938 ordinary shares of YHS — less than 1% of outstanding shares — to Hain Celestial. With the first investment, each company gave the other the option to acquire up to $6 million of additional equity.

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