Ireland-based fresh produce distributor Total Produce has entered into an agreement to merge with Dole Food Company and create a new US listed company, Dole plc.
The new combined company will operate under the Dole brand and be incorporated in Ireland with its global headquarters in Dublin and headquarters for the Americas in Charlotte, North Carolina.
In 2018, Total Produce acquired a 45% stake in Dole Food Company from the C&C shareholders for $300 million, laying the groundwork for a collaborative partnership between the two companies.
The move marks the next step to simplify their existing structure by unifying Dole and Total Produce under common ownership. Together, the combined company will have an estimated 2020 revenue of approximately $9.7 billion and expects to have increased geographical footprint, brand strength and an expanded diverse product portfolio.
Founded in 1851, Dole Food Company sells and distributes its fruit and vegetable products throughout its network in North America, Europe, Latin America, South Africa and Dubai. According to the transaction document, Total Produce’s strong presence across the European continent will complement Dole’s deep heritage in the Americas.
“I am delighted with this transaction, which combines two highly complementary premium businesses to create the global leader in fresh produce,” said Carl McCann, chairman of Total Produce.
Under the terms of the transaction, shareholders of Castle & Cooke – which own a 55% interest in Dole’s parent company (Dole Holdings) – will receive 17.5% of Dole plc shares; while Total Produce shareholders will receive 82.5% of Dole plc shares.
As part of the deal, Total Produce will move its listings from Dublin and London to the US. The transaction is subject to approval by Total Produce shareholders, regulatory approval and customary conditions.
McCann added: “The combined company will become the largest global player with over 170 years of history in fresh produce in both companies, a highly diversified portfolio, resilient earnings and a strong balance sheet that positions us well for accelerated growth.”
© FoodBev Media Ltd 2021
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