HKScan has signed a deal to sell its Danish subsidiary to Netherlands-based poultry group Plukon Food Group.

The transaction, valued at €44.6m ($47.6m), is the latest disposal to be made by Finland-based HKScan – and another acquisition to be carried out by Plukon in recent months.

HKScan revealed in March it was considering divesting from its Denmark business after agreeing to sell its Swedish business earlier this year.

The acquisition of HKScan’s unit in Denmark would be the fifth acquisition Plukon has made in the last year.

In a statement today, HKScan CEO Juha Ruohola said: “The sale of the Danish business will continue to strengthen the company’s balance sheet and allow us to better focus on our remaining businesses.

“Following the decision to sell the Danish business, the assessment of the group structure has been completed for now. We are strongly Finnish at our core but remain an internationally-operating, listed company.

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“We will now focus on improving the competitiveness and profitability of our core operations and continue to implement our long-term strategy to become a yet more versatile food company.”

Ruohola was appointed CEO after a period as interim chief executive following the departure in September of Tero Hemmilä, whose exit came alongside a statement from HKScan that “urgent measures” were necessary to “improve the profitability of the core business and to strengthen the balance sheet”.

Plukon’s move for the HKScan assets marks its entry into Denmark.

“With the acquisition of HKScan Denmark, we proudly welcome Denmark as our seventh home country,” CEO Kees Kraijenoord said. “This strategic move not only aligns perfectly with our growth ambitions but also provides us with the opportunity to expand our market presence for poultry, meals and alternatives throughout the Nordics.”

The deal comes a week after Plukon announced the purchase of Spanish poultry producer Sambau.

Earlier in April, the company acquired the assets of Polish peer Algas.

In February, Plukon also purchased a 51% stake in Dutch poultry peer JA ter Maten.

In January, the group acquired Redondo, another Spanish business. Like Sambau, both Grupo VMR and Redondo are also based in Madrid.

HKScan’s net sales in Finland in 2023 were €933m. The Finnish company’s total EBITDA was €52.7m ($60.7m at the time) for the twelve months until 31 December, up from €30.1m in 2022. However, it reported a loss of €15.6m for 2023, a slight improvement on a loss of €16m in 2022.

Plukon, headquartered in the Dutch town of Wezep, is a producer of poultry products, meals and salads, meal components and alternative proteins. The company had a turnover of around €2.8bn in 2022. 

Last month, HKScan said it was changing its name to HKFoods in stages from May.