"M&A activity remained quite healthy in March as private equity firms sought targets in supplement, contract manufacturing while strategic investors continue to acquire Chinese manufacturers. Red Diamond Capital and MidOcean Partners found favor with quality, contract manufacturers citing growth in dietary supplements, nutraceuticals and personal care as a key component in their respective acquisitions of Nutritional Laboratories and Vitaquest International.
US based firms’ interest in Chinese manufacturing companies continued as two Chinese properties signed letters of intent to be acquired in March. Sunwin International Neutraceuticals signed a letter of intent ("LOI") to acquire Jining Stevia Manufacturing, a manufacturer of the increasingly popular natural sweetener alternative, Stevia, while CortDev, Inc. signed an LOI to acquire Botaniex Inc, a China-based herbal products manufacturer. With their distinct price advantage, Chinese companies will remain popular targets with US based firms.
Another trend was the continuing consolidation in the sports nutrition distribution space as Dynamic Health Products forged ahead in their consolidation strategy acquiring Dynamic Marketing Inc. - their third acquisition in sports nutrition distribution since October 2004."
Mike Chase, Managing Director, Health Business Partners, Warwick, RI
Companies in the News: CoolBrands International Inc., Kraft Foods, CortDev, Inc., Botaniex Inc., Symrise GmbH & Co. KG, Flavours Direct.
[3/25/2005] COOLBRANDS Approves Final Breyer's Financing, Appoints New Independent Director
Canada-based CoolBrands International Inc. (CA:COBSVA) has announce that the Board has approved $40 million in financing for the previously announced acquisition of Breyer's yogurt from Kraft Foods, with the transaction expected to close March 28, 2005. The company has also announced the appointment of Arthur Waldbaum to serve as a Director.
[3/24/2005] CortDev, Inc. Signs Letter of Intent to Acquire Botaniex Inc.
US-based CortDev, Inc. (Pink Sheets:CDVJ), has announced that it has signed a letter of intent to acquire China-based herbal products company Botaniex Inc. According to the company, CDVJ will acquire 100% of the outstanding shares and assets of Botaniex Inc. in exchange for an equity position in CDVJ, with Botaniex Inc. the major shareholder in CDVJ, whose name will then change to Botaniex Inc.
[3/11/2005] Symrise Acquires English Flavor Manufacturer Flavours Direct
Germany-based flavor and fragrance company Symrise GmbH & Co. KG has announced that it will acquire UK-based flavor manufacturer Flavours Direct in a deal intended to strengthen Symrise's position in Britain and Ireland. According to the company, Flavours Direct will continue to trade under its current name as a UK subsidiary of Symrise.