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April 15, 2008

NETHERLANDS/UK: CSM buys Harden Fine Foods

CSM has acquired UK cake maker Harden Fine Foods for GBP6.4m (US$12.59m).

CSM has acquired UK cake maker Harden Fine Foods for GBP6.4m (US$12.6m).

The Netherlands-based ingredients group told just-food today (15 April) that the deal would enhance its presence in the UK bakery market.

“This is an important market for us and the acquisition will strengthen our business as it is a high value, high margin operation in a fast growing segment,” a company spokesperson said.

Harden Fine Foods supplies mini-bite flapjacks, brownies and cakes to in-store bakeries in supermarkets, as well as out-of-home market segments.

Harden operates production facilities in Bradford, Yorkshire, where it employs 210 people. Annual sales now amount to GBP11m, the company said.

It is felt that the deal will have a positive impact on CSM’s financial results, the company told just-food.

“We think Harden will immediately contribute to earnings because of the successful growth rate shown in recent years. Management at the company will remain the same and we are not integrating Harden with our other UK businesses, so we see no reason for this growth rate to slow,” the spokesperson added.

Commenting on the deal, Gerard Hoetmer, CEO of CSM said: “The acquisition of Harden Fine Foods, along with the acquisition of Kate’s Cakes in the UK last year, enforces CSM’s position in the sweet treats and American style bakery products in Europe.”

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