Danone takes control of Moroccan dairy

Danone takes control of Moroccan dairy

Centrale Laitière is Morocco's leading dairy product company with nearly 60 percent of the market.

Danone is raising its interest in Centrale Laitière to 67.0 percent by acquiring part of SNI's shareholding for a total €550 million.

Centrale Laitière, of which Danone has been a 29.2 percent shareholder since 2001, is Morocco's leading dairy product company with nearly 60 percent of the market. It has sales of around €600 million in a fast-growing market and operates the country's largest distribution platform with 30 storage hubs serving 70,000 points of sales. The Danone brand is already very well known in Morocco through products including Yawmy, Moufid and Activia, all sold by Centrale Laitière.

The current transaction represents a key step in Danone's development in Morocco. It will allow the Group to invest more in a market with major potential, and thus support growth of the local dairy industry. The move also confirms the strategic appeal of markets in North Africa for Danone.

This acquisition is subject to the approval of relevant authorities and is expected to be finalized by the end of 2012.

With a majority interest, Danone will fully integrate Centrale Laitière into its consolidated accounts, and the transaction will be accretive for Danone net earnings per share from the first year.

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