Archer Daniels Midland Co., facing a $3 billion pricetag for its planned purchase of Wild Flavors GmbH, on Sept. 2 announced it would sell its global chocolate business to Cargill Inc. for $440 million.
"The acquisition is an excellent fit with Cargill’s existing chocolate business and brings together two organizations with strong talent, broad customer bases and extensive research and development capabilities," Cargill said in a statement.
The transaction includes ADM’s three North American chocolate plants, located in Hazleton, Pa.; Georgetown, Ontario; and Milwaukee; as well as three in Europe (Liverpool, U.K.; Manage, Belgium; and Mannheim, Germany). Cargill has facilities in North America, Europe, Asia and Brazil. The deal also adds ADM’s Ambrosia, Merckens and Schokinag brands. Upon completion Cargill will gain approximately 700 employees.
Cargill noted it's been in cocoa and chocolate business since 1979 and is committed to ensuring the success of cocoa farmers and the long-term viability of a sustainable cocoa bean supply chain. The transaction is subject to regulatory approval in the U.S. and the European Union. It is expected to close in the first half of 2015.
ADM continues to work on its purchase of Wild Flavors, announced in July, which would thrust the agribusiness giant into flavors, especially natural ones.