01 June 1999
Unigate acquires French businesses

UNIGATE is expanding into mainland Europe through the acquisition of the Generale Traiteur (GT) and Marie Surgeles France (MSF) businesses of Groupe Danone. It is paying about Ffr1.45 billion (£145m).

GT is the market leader in the French chilled food market and produces ready meals, ethnic snack products and a range of convenience foods.

GT and MSF manufacture for retailer own-label and for catering and food service markets.

Sales of the combined businesses were FFr2.3bn in 1998 with operating profits of FFr91.8bn. At the year end net assets were FFr600m.

On completion Unigate will initially acquire 51% of MSF and 62% of GT for FFr904m and would have a call option to acquire the remaining shares for FFr730m by the end of May 2000.

  • The Times 01/06/99 page 43
  • The Independent 01/06/99 page 17 (Briefing)
  • Financial Times 01/06/99 page 22
  • The Guardian 01/06/99 page 19 (In Brief)
  • The Daily Telegraph 01/06/99 page 29