Bunge North America – the North American operating arm of Bunge Limited – will take control of four mills in Mexico and two mills in the US under the deal, which is expected to close early next year.
The facilities have a combined annual processing capacity of 700,000 metric tonnes and produce branded corn flours and pre-mixes for tortillas and other goods.
"This investment enhances Bunge's position in milling, an important contributor to our global food and ingredients business," said Bunge CEO Soren Schroder. "The operation is aligned with our core capabilities and increases the share of value-added business in our overall portfolio."
The deal takes Bunge into the corn masa market in Mexico for the first time – the business entered the US corn masa market in early 2014 with the purchase of its first mill in Worthington, Indiana.
Taking control of Grupo Minsa was a natural extension of the company’s milling platforms, added Bunge North America CEO Todd Bastean.
"This will enable us to expand in a product line that is growing due to demographic and economic trends," he said. "With more facilities, products, and capabilities, we'll be able to provide a broader offering and enhanced services to our growing customer base, with more logistical and operational flexibility."
The subscription agreement transaction is subject to the authorization of the Comisión Federal de Competencia Económica (Mexican Antitrust Commission), the delisting of the company from the Mexican Stock Exchange, and other customary closing conditions.
Growing demand for corn flour
US snack manufacturers are showing a growing demand for corn flour, Mexican tortilla and corn flour supplier Gruma – owner of brands including Mission and Guerrero – reported earlier this year.
Announcing its financial results for the second quarter of 2016, the business said volume sales of corn flour were up 3% year on year in its Gruma USA division.