Yıldız Holding sells dairy unit to French food giant

Yıldız Holding sells dairy unit to French food giant

Yıldız Holding sells dairy unit to French food giant

Yıldız Holding, chaired by Murat Ülker, owns United Biscuits and Godiva.

Turkey’s largest food group, Yıldız Holding, has sold its Ak Gıda dairy unit to French food giant Groupe Lactalis after an intended initial public offering (IPO) was canceled, the company has announced.

Yıldız Holding still has a 10 percent stake in the company, while some 80 percent of the stakes will be owned by Ak Gıda, the French company said in a written statement to the Public Disclosure Platform (KAP). 

The company said the sale agreement was signed and the planned IPO on May 6-8 was canceled in the statement. 

Yıldız Holding CFO Cem Karakaş said in a tweet that some 80 percent of Ak Gıda’s stakes were sold to Lactalis, while Yıldız’s stakes in the company will decrease to 10 percent from 33 percent after the deal with the French company. 

No financial details were given about the deal. 

Yıldız Holding also applied to the Turkish Competition Board on May 5 to buy all shares in fruit juice company Yıldız Granini Meyve Suyu from Germany’s Ecker-Granini Group Gmbh and Eckes-Granini International Gmbh. The group also sold all shares in Natura Food, which owns ice cream brand Ülker Golf, to Ice Cream Investments. 

Groupe Lactalis was listed in 2014 as the world’s 15th largest food firm. Ak Gıda had sales of 2.04 billion Turkish Liras in 2014, up 16.7 percent from the previous year. Its exports last year amounted to 84.7 million liras, mostly to Middle Eastern countries.

Yıldız, which also owns Turkey’s largest food maker, Ülker Bisküvi, bought U.K.-based cookies and snacks maker United Biscuits in November 2014, in a deal it said made it the world’s third-biggest biscuit maker.

Yıldız also acquired premium chocolate maker Godiva for $850 million in 2007 and DeMet’s Candy Co, the U.S. maker of Flipz’s chocolate pretzels and Turtles’ covered nut clusters, for $221 million in 2013.