INDEPENDENT NEWS

Goodman Fielder sells Starch Australasia

Published: Tue 29 Aug 2000 11:49 AM
For immediate release
29 August 2000
Goodman Fielder sells Starch Australasia
Goodman Fielder Limited (GMF) has entered into an agreement to sell its Australian and New Zealand food starch business, Starch Australasia Limited, to Penford Corporation (PENX) in the United States for approximately A$100 million. Terms and conditions of the sale agreement are commercial-in-confidence.
GFL Chief Executive, David Hearn, said the sale is a genuine win-win outcome that provides a good return to Goodman Fielder shareholders at a price substantially above book value and new opportunities for Starch Australasia and its employees.
“Goodman Fielder is selling the business because we believed an international starch player could develop Starch Australasia and Hi-maize™ more effectively,” Mr Hearn said. “As a leading speciality starch company based in North America, Penford Corporation will be able to leverage new regional and global opportunities for Starch Australasia.”
“As a result, Goodman Fielder shareholders have received a good return on Starch Australasia and we will get the added benefit of royalty payments from future global sales of Hi-maize™. Goodman Fielder will retain exclusive rights to Hi-maize™ in bread products throughout Australasia.”
“In addition, Goodman Fielder will benefit by redeploying the funds obtained from the sale of Starch Australasia into higher returning investments within our core businesses.”
The President and Chief Executive of Penford Corporation, Mr Jeffrey Cook, said the acquisition of Starch Australasia Limited will provide the US-based company with additional product coverage and geographic diversification in the Asia Pacific region.
“We are pleased with the prospects of Starch Australasia because it allows Penford Corporation to expand further into the food starch sector and provides us with a strong presence in Australia and New Zealand,” Mr Cook said.
“We are looking forward to working with our new employees in Australia and New Zealand and integrating their business with our successful starch business in the United States.”
Penford Corporation is a leading US supplier of speciality starches to the paper, textile and food industries. It is based in Seattle, Washington. It has approximately 400 employees and sales of approximately US$160 million. More company details are provided on the Penford Corporation home page (www.penx.com).
Starch Australasia Limited has production sites at Lane Cove in Sydney and Tamworth in regional New South Wales, and Auckland in New Zealand. It has 300 employees and sales of approximately A$100 million. More company details are available on the Starch Australasia home page (www.starchaust.com.au).
Hi-maize™ is a corn-based food starch product, developed with the assistance of the Commonwealth Scientific & Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO), that adds natural fibre to white bread such as Buttercup Wonder White and all McDonalds buns in Australia, without changing their taste or texture. More product information is contained on the Starch Australasia web site (www.hi-maize.com).
For further information:
For further details on Goodman Fielder Limited see our home page (www.goodmanfielder.com.au).
All other inquires should be referred to:
Jill Dryden
Managing Director
Porter Novelli Auckland
(09) 373 3786 work
(021) 242 0486 mobile

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