JM Smucker has agreed to buy the Wesson brand of cooking oils from Conagra Brands in a deal worth approximately $285 million.
The range of Wesson oils include vegetable, canola, corn and blended oils. They are widely available across the US. Conagra will continue to make the products sold under the Wesson brand and provide certain other transition services for up to a year after completion.
In the long term, JM Smucker expects to consolidate Wesson production into its existing oils manufacturing facility in Cincinnati, Ohio.
Conagra Brands president and chief executive officer Sean Connolly said: “We continue to reshape our portfolio and focus our resources on priorities that support Conagra’s business strategy and drive value creation for shareholders. We believe The JM Smucker Company will be a terrific steward of the Wesson brand.”
Wesson will join Crisco – the Smucker-owned brand of oils, shortening and non-stick cooking sprays that it bought from Procter & Gamble in 2002.
The transaction is expected to generate pre-tax earnings of approximately $30 million and lead to annual cost synergies of around $20 million within two years of closing.
JM Smucker chief executive officer Mark Smucker added: “The addition of Wesson creates a strong complement to our Crisco brand. By allowing us to more efficiently use existing supply chain and go-to-market resources, this acquisition will lead to significant cost savings that can further fuel growth and innovation opportunities across the company.”
The deal will allow Conagra to focus on its core lines, following the buyout of Duke’s meat snacks and Bigs seeds in March.
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