Total Produce Takes 45 Percent Stake in Dole Food Company
DUNDALK, IRELAND and WESTLAKE VILLAGE, CA - Major European fresh produce company Total Produce has announced a binding agreement with Dole Food Company to acquire a 45 percent equity stake in the company. Total Produce will acquire the stake from Dole owner David H. Murdock for a cash consideration totaling $300 million.
“We are delighted to have signed an agreement with Dole, long held in the highest regard as one of the world's best fresh produce companies, with iconic brands dating back to 1851,” announced Carl McCann, Chairman of Total Produce, in a press release. “We are particularly pleased to be partnering with David Murdock who has been an inspirational and visionary leader since he acquired a majority shareholding in Dole in 1985…I believe that this investment by Total Produce in Dole is the single most positive step in our company's history. It places Total Produce at the forefront of our industry, and we anticipate it will create significant additional value for shareholders in the years ahead.”
The two companies also noted the following highlights of the transaction:
- Attractive industry backdrop: Fresh fruits & vegetables sector is expected to outperform vis-à-vis packaged food driven by a structural trend towards healthy eating and snacking
- Dole is an iconic brand with leading market positions and scale: Dole has #1 and #3 positions in bananas in North America and Europe, and #2 and #3 positions in pineapples in North America and Europe and #2 position in fresh-cut salads in North America
- Bringing together two highly complementary businesses: The transaction creates the world's leading fruit & vegetables group with potential to realize synergies
- Balanced transaction structure and terms: Provides Total Produce with significant governance rights and flexibility on path forward
- Total Produce has a proven track record: The investment is a continuation of Total Produce's successful acquisition strategy with approximately 325 percent of total shareholder return delivered to shareholders over the last 5 years
The transaction will see Total Produce acquire a minority stake in one of the world’s largest fresh produce companies. During the fiscal twelve months ending October 7, 2017, Dole generated revenue of $4,455 million and Adjusted EBITDA of $237 million. The two companies noted in a press release that the transaction consideration for the 45 percent interest implies a Dole enterprise value of approx. $2 billion—approximately nine times Dole Adjusted EBITDA.
“With great pride I announce the creation of a new partnership between Dole Food Company and Total Produce, for many years I have cherished my friendship with the McCann Family, and I know that my late friend Neil McCann would be so proud to see his son Carl McCann completing this strategic partnership between our two companies,” said David H. Murdock, Chairman and Owner of Dole. “Both Dole and Total Produce have a standard of perfection that leads the industry in innovation, together we will further our joint mission of providing the highest quality produce to the world.”
Terms of the transaction also allow Total Produce—in addition to the initial $300 transaction or “First Tranche”—to approach a “Second Tranche” and acquire an additional six percent of the company. Total Produce has announced no intention of exercising this option.
This announcement follows news, earlier this month, that Greenyard and Dole had concluded negotiations without reaching an acquisition agreement.
For more information on this and other important transactions in our industry, stay tuned to AndNowUKnow.