US-based prepared salad producer Ready Pac Foods is set to become a subsidiary of French company Bonduelle.
Subject to regulatory approval, a deal between the two companies is expected to be finalised by the end of March.
In a company statement, Bonduelle said it intends to acquire all of Ready Pac Foods' common stock, thereby making the US group a wholly-owned subsidiary.
The group said that the "milestone transaction" would be a key step in Bonduelle's strategic ambition VegeGo! 2025 of being "the world reference in "well living" through vegetable products".
"This acquisition will strengthen Bonduelle's international footprint and dramatically change its profile, making the US the largest country of operations, continuing a longstanding track record of successful acquisitions in North America, in particular Aliments Carrière, Canada, in 2007 and Allens, USA in 2012, and the fresh category, its first business segment," the group said in a statement. "This transaction will also offer new opportunities to Ready Pac Foods business partners and deliver significant value to Bonduelle's shareholders."
Ready Pac specialises in bagged lettuce blends, salad kits and Bistro Bowls sold through US retail chains.
Bonduelle sells processed and fresh vegetables from its operations in Canada and Europe. The deal would make the US Bonduelle’s largest market.
Christophe Bonduelle, Bonduelle's chairman and CEO, said: "We welcome all of the Ready Pac Foods employees into the Bonduelle family. We look forward to working with the highly skilled and successful Ready Pac Foods management team in bringing together two great companies in the vegetal food industry. This acquisition shows Bonduelle's ambition to further develop as a global leader in its markets and strengthen its positions in the consumer convenience and health segments to meet consumers' needs."
"We are thrilled to partner with market leader Bonduelle in our next Chapter of growth and feel we will be right at home within the Bonduelle family of companies," said Ready Pac Foods CEO, Tony Sarsam. "Beyond common business goals, both companies share a common purpose - to help people live healthier lives through innovative fresh food products. I am enthusiastic about Bonduelle's investment in our growth strategy and for the great success we will achieve together."