Dutch food ingredients group DSM has struck a deal to buy US-based Martek Biosciences in an all-cash transaction worth US$1.09bn.

The agreement, announced today (21 December), is set to see DSM buy Martek for $31.50 per share.

DSM said the transaction will add a “new growth platform for healthy and natural food ingredients for infant formula and other food and beverage applications”. The group said it would benefit from Martek’s presence in polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) such as microbial omega-3 DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) and omega-6 ARA (arachidonic acid).

“This acquisition is an attractive and logical next step for DSM,” said Feike Sijbesma, CEO and chairman of DSM. “Martek’s leading position in healthy, natural ingredients and algal technology will add a new growth platform to our nutrition business. DSM is a unique partner for Martek and, with our strong track record of growing businesses in competitive environments, we believe we can help to lift Martek to the next level.”

Martek chairman Robert Flanagan said the transaction offers “the best value” for its shareholders.

The two companies already have a long-standing relationship as DSM supplies Martek with the key base material for its ARA product. DSM also has “complementary intellectual property” to the broad range of patents and intellectual property Martek owns, which it said will “further extend the competitiveness” of the combined company’s products.

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Subject to customary conditions, the tender process is expected to close in February, and the transaction is expected to close in the first or second quarter of 2011.

Click here for the full announcement from DSM.