Bakery ingredients firm tempts Burn Philps

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Bakery ingredients, Burns philp

Burns Philp last week reaffirmed its desire to buy Fleischmann's
South American bakery ingredients business if it was put up for
sale

Australian ingredients company Burns Philp last week reaffirmed its desire to buy Fleischmann's South American bakery ingredients business if it was put up for sale, IndustrySearch.com reports.

The group said it confirmed previous public statements that if the business "became available for sale, it would be interested in investigating an acquisition".

The global food ingredients group was responding to reports that it was interested in buying the South American bakery business, worth an estimated $200 million.

Burns Philp's major shareholder Graeme Hart has been in the news recently over rumours that he is interested in spending another $197 million (€119) on buying a major slice of the New Zealand dairy foods industry.

Last week, the company said it would sell off two of its non-core assets - the Australasian Terminals division and North American industrial vinegar division - as long as the price was right.Burns Philp almost collapsed under a mountain of debt in 1997 before restructuring its $1.83 billion debt into a five-year $900 million credit facility, the report continues.

Chairman Alan McGregor told shareholders last August that the company was now in a sound position to grow its core yeast and bakery ingredients operations and continue its consolidation process.

The reinvigorated yeast and spice supplier is on track to post a net profit of $120 million for 2001/02.Burns Philp said the industrial vinegar division trades under the Fleischmann brand name and is the leading producer of industrial vinegar in North America.

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