Chile-based fruit producer Inversiones e Inmobilaria – also known as Prize – is to be floated in the US through a SPAC transaction.
The berries and cherries supplier has entered a business “combination agreement” with Rose Hill Acquisition Corp., a US-based special purpose acquisition company. The closing of the SPAC deal, which is expected in the first quarter of next year, gives Prize an enterprise value of US$425m.
The Nasdaq listing will provide “a launching pad for Prize to enter the next phase in its global evolution, supported internally through vertical integration in its business segments and externally through a robust and diversified set of growers and retailers”, according to a statement.
Requínoa-based Prize is described as “a leading Latin American producer and distributor of berries and cherries in the Southern Hemisphere”, cultivating produce in Chile and Peru. The business, which claims to be the world’s fifth-largest cherries exporter, also targets markets in the US, China and Europe during their off-season. Prize’s Peru operations mainly focus on blueberries.
Alejandro García-Huidobro, the founder and CEO of Prize, said: “Over the last 16 years, we have developed Prize into a global company providing quality, nutritious fruits to tens of millions of people in 30-plus countries to feed the world. The next stage of accomplishing this goal starts with expanding the global palette for super-fruits by producing new, tastier varieties targeting differentiated consumers in the nascent Chinese market, alongside more mature markets like the US.”
Meanwhile, Rose Hill has secured a $150m equity facility with New Jersey-based growth investor Yorkville Advisors as a “financing source for future opportunistic expansion for the combined company”.
Albert Hill, Rose Hill’s co-founder and joint finance chief, said: “Rose Hill set out to unlock Latin America’s potential to produce world-class companies using the tools of the most international markets on Earth, the US markets, and conversely, to provide US and international investors with access to well-managed, profitable, rapidly growing Latin American businesses at a time when value appeared to be a fleeting proposition locally.
“After speaking with dozens of companies, we believe we have found in Prize an exceptional enterprise at the intersection of our goals, and we share the Prize team’s excitement in building this company into an internationally renowned super-fruits platform.”