MUNICH, November 9, 2011 /PRNewswire/ --
Trading Group Acquires New Zealand's market Leading Exporter of Pip Fruit
Munich-based BayWa AG is entering the international fruit trading business in New Zealand and intends to take over 63 percent of Turners & Growers (T&G) from its major shareholder London-based Guinness Peat Group Plc (GPG). This would make BayWa one of the world's most important suppliers of pip fruit. The international trading group has already agreed the purchase of 63 percent of the issued shares in T&G held by the main shareholder GPG. As required by New Zealand takeover regulations, the acquisition will be made as part of a takeover offer to acquire up to 100% of the issued share capital of T&G at a price of NZ$ 1.85 per share. The purchase price range will be between NZ$ 137 million and NZ$ 216 million (EUR 79 million and EUR 125 million), depending on the level of acceptances by T&G shareholders. The transaction is conditional on approval from the German Federal Cartel Office and the New Zealand Overseas Investment Office.
T&G's presence on five continents will enable BayWa AG to expand its offering in the fruit business and to access global growth markets, particularly Asia where T&G is already established. "The takeover is a ground-breaking step towards globalization for BayWa. We will become one of the world's most important suppliers of fruit, as Turners & Growers is represented in all key markets on all continents. The door to Asia, the highest growth market for fruit, is now wide open for BayWa's fruit trading business", commented Klaus Josef Lutz, Chief Executive Officer of BayWa, in explanation of the decision.
T&G is New Zealand's market leader in the export and domestic distribution of dessert fruit. In addition, the company holds the exclusive brand rights for the global cultivation and sale of the Jazz and Envy apple varieties and the ENZAGreen, ENZAGold and ENZARed kiwi varieties. Furthermore, the company holds a 70-percent stake in Delica NZ, New Zealand's largest diversified exporter of fresh fruit and the sole exporter of ENZA dessert fruit to Asia. T&G functions as a trading platform for apples in South America, USA, South Africa, Asia, and Europe.
The acquisition will considerably strengthen the Agriculture Segment's successful business line. The aim is to promote the expansion of this business unit. "The takeover of New Zealand's leading fruit trader will also allow us to expand our domestic fruit business: The different harvesting seasons in the various countries means that we will now be able to supply food retailers in Germany throughout the whole year", emphasised Lutz. Fruit farmers working together with BayWa in Germany will also benefit from the takeover through improved sales and distribution opportunities for their products. BayWa plans to work closely with New Zealand growers to increase volumes and improve returns. "We will deliver proof of our know-how and of our close collaboration with producers in New Zealand based on a partnership approach - just as we do in Germany", promised BayWa's CEO.
BayWa AG is an international trading and services company in its core segments of Agriculture, Building Materials and Energy. In the financial year 2010, the company generated an EBIT of almost EUR 130 million and revenues of approximately EUR 8 billion with its workforce of more than 16,000 employees.
In its Fruit Business Unit, the BayWa Group is a leading supplier of German dessert fruit to food retailers and the largest supplier of pipfruit from organic production. As a contracted agent for a number of production partners, BayWa collects and stores dessert fruit from the regions of Lake Constance/Neckar as well as Rhineland Palatinate and sells it in Germany and abroad.
T&G was founded in 1897 and employs a workforce of around 1,400 employees within the group. The international company is listed on the New Zealand Stock Exchange and achieved annual revenues of EUR 346 million in 2010. Its core business consists of exporting apples, kiwis and tomatoes and providing the associated logistics.
 Based on EUR 1 = NZ$[1.724]