Numico to sell South African baby food business

Related tags Baby food South africa

Dutch infant nutrition group Royal Numico is to sell its
unprofitable South African baby food business as it looks to
concentrate on regions where it can gain a leading position.

The business produces and markets infant milk formula, cereals and juices under the Infacare brand in South Africa. In 2003, it had total sales of Euros 8 million but failed to make a profit.

Numico said it had reached an agreement with pharmaceutical and healthcare products maker Aspen Pharmacare​ for the sale of the Infacare trademark for South Africa, the Clayville, South Africa production facility and approximately 90 employees. Financial details were not disclosed.

The sale is part of Numico's current strategy to drive growth and focus on high-margin acitivities, concentrating "on geographies where Numico can sustain or reach a market leading position in either baby food or clinical nutrition,"​ said the company in a statement.

After a wave of divestments, it recently announced plans to buy the baby food business of Finland's Valio for €57 million in cash, its first acquisition since since selling off its supplement activities and reorganising around infant and clinical nutrition.

The deal will give the company a market leading position in the infant milk formula and cereals categories in Finland, and reinforce its position in the Baltics.

The South Africa transaction is subject to customary regulatory approval and is expected to be completed by the end of the third quarter 2004.

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