Danisco, Nordzucker alter deal for sugar business

by Jeff Gelski
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COPENHAGEN, DENMARK — Danisco and Nordzucker have renegotiated the price of Nordzucker’s acquisition of Danisco Sugar. The two companies have agreed to a price of DKK5.45 billion ($937 million). The price was DKK5.6 billion ($962 million) when the deal was first announced last July.

"The key financial figures, which have now been finalized for the acquisition of Danisco Sugar, take due account of all the underlying conditions, which in our opinion are of relevance," said Hans-Gerd Birlenberg, chief executive officer of Nordzucker, Braunschweig, Germany. "I am delighted that the necessary foundations are now all in place so that Nordzucker can proceed to actively shape its future together with Danisco Sugar."

Copenhagen-based Danisco receives payment of an outstanding payment of originally about DKK600 million in July 2008 (relating to the stock exchange notice of July 14, 2008) from the sale of European Union quotas in 2007-08 and earlier. As of Feb. 28, 2009, this amount is expected to total abut DKK375 million after repayments.

Danisco will use about DKK510 million, previously about DKK360 million, for a loan to Nordzucker carrying an annual interest rate of 4%. The loan will be due March 15, 2011. Since the financing of the deal will total about DKK1.1 billion, Danisco will cancel the share buy-back program mentioned in the company’s interim report of Dec. 16, 2008.

The transaction is expected to close March 2. Nordzucker will provide detailed information shortly after closing. Danisco will issue a stock exchange notice with additional details as soon as the transfer is completed fully.

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