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Mike Knowles

BY MIKE KNOWLES

@mikefruitnet

Greenyard-Dole: takeover deal is off

Belgian business unable to reach agreement with US fresh produce company on proposed US$2.5bn deal

Greenyard-Dole: takeover deal is off

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A massive, landmark deal that would have seen the world’s largest fruit and vegetable supplier, Greenyard, acquire US-based produce company Dole Food for a reported US$2.5bn will not go ahead.

In a statement, the Belgian company said that negotiations to buy Dole had “ended without a definitive agreement”, bringing to a close an intriguing chapter in the history of both companies and ending speculation over what would have created by far the world’s largest fresh produce company.

Hein Deprez, executive chairman of Greenyard, said his company had “pursued all efforts to realise a transaction” that would benefit it both financially and strategically while also offering value for its various stakeholders.

“Nevertheless an agreement could not be reached,” he reported, adding: “While the acquisition of Dole by Greenyard would have marked a significant milestone for both companies, we are confident that Greenyard has the right strategy and priorities in place to continue generating profitable growth and strengthening our global leadership position in fruit and vegetables.

The news that Greenyard was consulting with advisors on a possible takeover of Dole hit the headlines at the end of last year.

At the time, the group said it was in advanced negotiations to acquire what was once the world’s biggest fruit and vegetable producer, offering a sum believed to be in the region of US$2.5bn, including a certain amount of debt.

California-based Dole has been considering a potential initial public offering for a while, and last year filed with regulators for an Initial Public Offering of up to US$100m of its common stock.

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