REGINA, Nov. 1 /CNW/ - Alliance Grain Traders Inc. (TSX: AGT) ("AGTI") is pleased to announce that it has acquired A. Poortman (London) Ltd. Group ("Poortmans"), an international importer, distributor and stockist of pulses, with offices in London, UK, the Netherlands and Tianjin, China. The business that was acquired includes a processing plant for dry edible beans and pulses, located in Tianjin, China, and trading and sales offices in Europe. The business was acquired from Andrew Jacobs, the Managing Director of Poortmans, and Trinidad Benham Corporation, a leading U.S. packaged foods company. Mr. Jacobs will remain with the company in a management role.
"Poortmans is one of the oldest and most recognized trading companies for pulses and birdseeds in Europe. This is another strategic acquisition for us, and supports our continued expansion into the global dry edible bean industry. Among other things, it gives us a processing presence in China, one of the world's most important dry bean exporting regions. Poortmans has an established presence with many of the leading European canners and packagers as well as pulses and birdseed ingredient users. This acquisition enhances our distribution platform in Europe and our sourcing ability for beans, lentils, chickpeas and birdseeds from origins all over the world," commented Murad Al-Katib, President and CEO of AGTI. "Poortmans has excellent supplier and customer relationships with numerous leading food companies and many customers who regularly buy the quality products that AGTI produces. Poortmans experienced management team, under Andrew's continued leadership, will be invaluable to us as we continue to grow our dry bean business," continued Mr. Al-Katib.
"We are very pleased to be joining AGTI's global team and to contribute to the growth of their bean, pulses and birdseeds platform. The strength of AGTI's origination and global operations will greatly enhance Poortmans' future growth and development as a multi-origin supplier of pulses and birdseed ingredients to the quality conscious markets of the world," said Andrew Jacobs, Managing Director of Poortmans. "With this transaction and AGTI behind us, our entire team is excited about the opportunities ahead."
"We have enjoyed a successful nine year partnership with Poortmans and we are pleased the acquisition was made by a strategic buyer in our industry. This sale allows Trinidad Benham to invest capital in our core business in the U.S.A. We wish the new team success in the future and look forward to our continued trading relationship with Poortmans and AGTI companies, Saskcan Pulse Trading and United Pulse Trading," expressed Carl Hartman, Chairman and CEO of Trinidad Benham Corporation.
The purchase price for the acquisition was £8.3 million (pounds sterling), with AGTI committing a further CDN $2 million dollars for expansion of the Chinese bean processing facility. Pootmans' balance sheet also includes net working capital of approximately £5 million.
Alliance Grain Traders Inc. Profile
Alliance Grain Traders Inc. (AGTI) is a pulse processor and exporter engaged in the business of value-added processing (cleaning, splitting, sorting and bagging) of pulses and specialty crops, for export and domestic markets. Through its processing facilities located in some of the best pulse growing regions in Canada, the U.S., Turkey and Australia, AGTI handles a full range of pulses and specialty crops including lentils, peas, chickpeas, beans and canary seed. Through its subsidiaries in Turkey, the Arbel Group, AGTI also produces other staple foods including Arbella Pasta, rice, and milled wheat products, such as bulgur and semolina.
Poortmans has been an international importer, distributor and stockist of pulses including beans, lentils, chickpeas, and birdseed such as millet, canary, sunflower and niger seed, for over 140 years. To ensure continuity of supply for all customers and to meet spot demand, stock is held at four strategic locations in the UK, Holland, Spain, and Italy. Experienced and specialized trading teams are integral to the success of Poortmans, working worldwide with suppliers to source suitable product and meet quality and delivery standards, while remaining competitive and ensuring continuity of supply. Risks are spread and managed effectively, enabling Poortmans to achieve its goal of delivering first quality product on time, every time with no break in supply. Branch offices in London, UK, Waalwijk, the Netherlands and a bean processing plant in Tianjin, China make up the Poortman Group.
Certain statements in this press release are forward-looking statements. The reader is cautioned that assumptions used in the preparation of such information, although considered reasonable by AGTI at the time of preparation, may prove to be incorrect. Forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors which may cause the actual results, performance or achievements of AGTI (including its operating subsidiaries) to be materially different from any future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by the forward-looking statements. Such risks and uncertainties include, among others, the actual results of harvests, fluctuations in the price of lentils and other crops, failure of plant, equipment or processes to operate as anticipated, accidents or labour disputes, risks relating to the integration of acquisitions or to international operations as well as those factors referred to in the section entitled "Risk Factors" in the Annual Information Form of AGTI dated March 30, 2010 which is available on SEDAR at www.sedar.com, and which should be reviewed in conjunction with this document. Although AGTI has attempted to identify important factors that could cause actual actions, events or results to differ materially from those described in forward-looking statements, there may be other factors that cause actions, events or results not to be as anticipated, estimated or intended. There can be no assurance that forward-looking statements will prove to be accurate, as actual results and future events could differ materially from those anticipated in such statements. Accordingly, readers should not place undue reliance on forward-looking statements. AGTI expressly disclaims any intention or obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, except in accordance with applicable securities laws.
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Omer Al-Katib, Investor Relations