Cargill Spends $1.1B on International Expansion
Cargill, Inc., has reportedly spent more than $1 billion to expand its presence in Australia and Indonesia.
The Wayzata-based company announced on Wednesday that is has agreed to purchase a grain commodities business in Australia and has acquired a majority stake in an Indonesian firm that produces sorbitol-a sweetener found in food, cosmetic, and pharmaceutical products.
Cargill spokeswoman Lori Johnson said that the purchase price for the grain commodities business-called AWB-will not be determined until it closes in the first quarter of 2011 because the agreement includes inventory, which fluctuates in price. However, the Star Tribune reported that the company will pay about $800 million for the business.
Agrium said in a statement that net proceeds from its sale to Cargill, combined with the release of working capital from AWB Harvest Finance-a finance company that supports the ACM business-is about $870 million.
Meanwhile, Cargill paid about $300 million for an 85 percent stake in Indonesian firm, PT Sorini Agro Asia Corporindo Tbk (Sorini). Sorini operates seven manufacturing facilities in Indonesia. Cargill began doing business in Indonesia in 1974 and has more than 8,000 employees in the country.
The grain commodities business will be purchased from Canadian agricultural company Agrium, Inc., which just bought the assets earlier this month.
The acquisition will include AWB grain marketing and pool operations, international grain trading businesses, grain distribution and storage assets, and other international operations.
“AWB's grain businesses are a great fit with Cargill Australia's existing grain and commodity trading operations,” Ralph Selwood, managing director of Cargill Australia, said in a statement. “It helps us meet growing food demand in Asia and around the world, while continuing to give the highest level of customer service to our Australian customers.”
Cargill is an international provider of food, agricultural, financial, and industrial products and services. It employs 131,000 people in 66 countries and is Minnesota's largest private company based on its revenue, which totaled $107.9 billion in its most recently completed fiscal year.