Total Produce to merge with Dole and move listing to U.S.

Total Produce to merge with Dole and move listing to U.S.

Total Produce to merge with Dole and move listing to U.S.

Ireland-based Total Produce has announced it will combine with Dole Food Company under a newly created, U.S.-listed firm called Dole plc.

Total Produce, which bought a 45 percent stake in dole for $300m in July 2018, has reached the agreement with Castle & Cooke (C&C), which owns the other 55 percent interest in Dole's parent company.

Once the transaction has been completed Total Produce will no longer be listed on Euronext Dublin and the London Stock Exchange, the company said in a statement.

The deal will "simplify the existing structure between the two companies by unifying Dole and Total Produce under common ownership, with the objective of enabling full operational integration, realisation of synergies and value creation across the enlarged business," it said.

Dole plc will have an estimated combined 2020 revenue of approximately US$9.7 billion, adjusted EBITDA of approximately US$379 million and total assets of approximately US$4.5 billion.

Total Produce said Dole plc will benefit from the strength of the Dole brand to further expand its product offering and pursue synergistic M&A in a fragmented and structurally growing industry".

It will also be well-positioned to deliver attractive long-term growth and utilize its increased size and network to drive market penetration and cross-selling, it said.

Under the terms of the agreement, Total Produce shareholders will receive 82.5 percent of shares in the newly created Dole company, with C&C shareholders receiving the remaining shares.

Dole plc, operating under the Dole brand, will be incorporated in Ireland, with its Global Headquarters in Dublin. Its headquarters for the Americas will be in Charlotte, North Carolina.

“I am delighted with this Transaction, which combines two highly complementary premium businesses to create the global leader in fresh produce," said Carl McCann, Chairman of Total Produce.

"I am confident the combined business will open new avenues of value creation for shareholders and pursue innovation in healthy nutrition for our customers worldwide."

He added that the intention to list the new company in the U.S. marks an "exciting next step" for Dole plc.

"The combined company will become the largest global player with over 170 years of history in fresh produce in both companies, a highly diversified portfolio, resilient earnings and a strong balance sheet that positions us well for accelerated growth," he said.

"We look forward to beginning this next chapter and providing increased opportunity for our shareholders, dedicated employees, customers, suppliers and partners."

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