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The WhiteWave Foods Company (NYSE:WWAV) (“WhiteWave”), a leading consumer packaged food and beverage company in North America and Europe, today announced that it has agreed to acquire Earthbound Farm, one of the country’s leading organic food brands, from its existing shareholders led by Kainos Capital and founders Drew & Myra Goodman, for approximately $600 million in cash.
Both WhiteWave and Earthbound Farm are pioneers and innovators in the organic industry, recognized for creating the on-trend, high-growth food and beverage categories in which they compete. With anticipated 2013 net sales of over $500 million, Earthbound Farm is the largest organic produce brand in North America and the recognized leader in the value-added organic packaged salad category. Earthbound Farm also produces and markets an extensive line of organic fresh fruits and vegetables, frozen fruits and vegetables, and dried fruits and snacks. WhiteWave manufactures, markets, distributes, and sells branded plant-based foods and beverages, coffee creamers and beverages, and premium dairy products throughout North America and Europe under widely-recognized, leading brands including Silk®, Horizon Organic®, International Delight®, and LAND O LAKES®*. Both companies are committed to creating great-tasting, responsibly-produced foods that are better for people and the planet.
“Earthbound Farm is an outstanding organization well-known for innovation, freshness, organic stewardship and food safety. It is a natural extension of our business that reaffirms WhiteWave’s leadership in the organic foods and beverages industry in North America,” said Gregg Engles, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of WhiteWave. “Fresh foods are one of the most attractive, emerging trends in the food industry today and the market for organic products continues to grow steadily. With Horizon Organic and Earthbound Farm, WhiteWave will now provide the two most popular gateways for consumers to enter into the organic category – produce and dairy.”
Engles continued, “Over the last year, WhiteWave has established a solid foundation and delivered strong financial results as an independent company, and this acquisition will allow us to drive additional shareholder value. The acquisition is expected to be accretive to earnings per share in the first year after close and will add to our already-strong growth momentum. We look forward to partnering with our talented colleagues at Earthbound Farm as we work to change the way the world eats for the better.”