China-based WH Group plans to sell US-based Smithfield Foods’ seasoning business unit to French ingredients supplier Solina for US$587 million.
WH bought Smithfield, the world’s largest pork processor and hog producer in 2013. WH directors believe the sale of the Saratoga Food unit “represents a good opportunity for the company to unlock the value of the assets.”
The sale will enable the company to reallocate capital into future investment opportunities while continue maintaining a key relationship with the buyer (Solina), a strategic supplier of raw materials for some of the group’s production facilities.
According to Smithfield Corporate Affairs Vice President Jim Monroe, “It’s a great deal for our Saratoga team in the US because it’s very complementary with Solina business. Saratoga is focused on the US market, whereas Solina is strong in Europe.”
Solina has production facilities in 19 countries and customers in more than 75 countries.