British frozen food specialist Nomad Foods, which owns Iglo Foods and the Birdseye brand, is to acquire Swedish Findus Group's European activities for some 700 million euro.
"New growth opportunities"
When last June rumours said that Nomad Foods was interested in acquiring Findus Europe, the group stated that "talks were only in a preliminary stage". Now, it has been confirmed that Nomad will buy Findus Group's Swedish, Norwegian, Finnish, Danish, French, Spanish and Belgian operations, while six production locations (in Norway, Sweden, France and Spain) will also transfer to Nomad Foods.
Nomad Foods will not get its hands on the British brand Young's Seafood, probably to avoid any clashes with antitrust authorities. If it did decide to acquire Findus Group's entire UK operation, it would have a 45 % market share over there, raising the alarm bells at said authorities.
Nomad Foods is creating a group that has just about every possible frozen food option imaginable, from peas to fish sticks to lasagna: "While the operations we are acquiring are attractive assets on their own, combining them with our existing businesses creates a unique value proposition and unlocks new growth opportunities", Nomad CEO Stefan Descheemaeker said.
McCain still owns Lutosa
Belgian potato product manufacturer Lutosa has released a statement saying it is not a part of the Findus Europe sale to Nomad Foods. "Contrary to what has been published in the margin of Nomad Foods' Findus Europe acquisition, Lutosa and its brand will remain the property of Lutosa SA." Lutosa SA is part of the McCain group and has two factories in Belgium, whose employees will not feel anything from the Findus Europe sale.
The reason for that is that Findus Europe only owns a small part of Lutosa through a license deal. Actually, the license deal, which only represents 2 % of Lutosa's worldwide turnover, was a demand from the competition authority to allow McCain to acquire Lutosa.