Saputo to acquire Fromage Cote and Distributions Kingsey

by Staff
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MONTREAL — Saputo Inc. has entered into an agreement to acquire activities and cheese products from Fromage Cote S.A. and Distributions Kingsey Inc., Saputo officials announced today. The deal includes manufacturing, marketing and distribution activities for pressed cheddar and cheddar cheese curd, Swiss-type cheese and other specialty cheeses sold under the brand names Kingsey, Princesse, Sir Laurier d'Arthabaska and Du Village de Warwick.

The purchase price is C$54 million (U.S.$44.8 million) on a debt-free basis, payable in cash, Saputo officials said. The closing of the transaction is subject to the usual conditions, including approval by Canada's Competition Bureau, and is anticipated for early April.

Fromage Cote and Distributions Kingsey employ approximately 400 people in Quebec at their plants in Warwick and Plessisville, at their cheese aging center in Victoriaville, as well as at their cutting and distribution center in Boucherville. The organization's annual revenues are approximately C$110 million (U.S.$91.2 million). The assets will complement Saputo's current cheese-making activities in Canada, Saputo said.

Saputo employs 7,500 in its 42 plants and distribution centers. Its products are offered under the brand names of Saputo, Stella, Frigo, Dragone, Armstrong, Caron, Cayer, Treasure Cave, Dairyland, Baxter, Nutrilait, La Paulina, Ricrem and Vachon.

Saputo is the largest dairy processor in Canada, one of the largest cheese producers in North America and the third largest dairy processor in Argentina

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