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CSM sheds natural alcohol supplier to focus on bakery ingredients

03-Dec-2004

CSM, the Dutch food ingredients company continues to shed non-core activities, signing off its stake in natural alcohol supplier Koninklijke Nedalco in a €24 million deal.

The Diemen/Breda-based firm will sell its 39 per cent stake in the Dutch firm to natural ingredients co-operative Royal Cosun, and expects to gain €14 million in net profit.

The move fits in with the €2.8 billion firm's strategy to focus on its core bakery supplies and sugar operations, shaving off any units that are in the way of this aim.

Carving a bigger slice of European bakery ingredients market CSM went on the acquisition trail last year buying in June the bakery operations of Coberco Dairy Foods, outside The Netherlands, that had an annual turnover of €11 million.

In May, CSM reached an agreement to acquire the bakery ingredients business of Unilever in Hungary. The transaction, valued at €5.1 million ($5.9 million), took effect from 31 May.

And in March this year CSM officially sealed the merger of UK bakery ingredients and finished foods firms, Arkady Craigmillar, Readi-Bake and Caravan Brill. CSM bought Readi-bake, a subsidiary of Country Home Bakers with annual sales of €22 million, last year for €28 million, giving the firm a step up into American-style cookies and sweet treats in the British market.

As grain products are increasingly replacing molasses, a by-product of sugar production, as a raw material in the production of alcohol, "the stake in Nedalco no longer fits in with the CSM strategy," commented the company in a statement today on the Koninklijke Nedalco divestment.

Based in the Netherlands, and with a turnover of €75 million, the 100 strong firm produces natural alcohol for the liquor industry and for industrial use.

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