SUGAR LAND, TEXAS — An affiliate of Arlon Group, a private investment group focused on food and agriculture, has agreed to acquire Imperial Sugar Co.’s 50% interest in Wholesome Sweeteners, Inc. for approximately $55 million to $60 million in cash. Closing of the transaction, which is subject to consummation of the buyer’s debt financing, is expected to occur in April.
Imperial said it expects to report a gain of $35 million to $40 million upon completion of the sale.
Wholesome Sweeteners is a provider of organic and fair trade certified sweeteners in North America. The company, which was formed in 2001, is a 50/50 joint venture between Imperial and Edward Billington and Son, Limited of Liverpool, England.
A unit of Continental Grain Co., Arlon Group L.L.C. was created in February 2008 to manage Continental’s investment activities that are independent of the company’s legacy agribusiness portfolio. Arlon was established with three units: Arlon Capital Partners, which makes direct privately-negotiated investments; Arlon Opportunities Investors, which invests in publicly-traded securities and commodities; and Arlon Asset Management, which engages external managers to invest with an endowment style. Arlon is named for the town in Belgium where Continental was established in 1813.