Ajinomoto in Talks with Metex on Animal Feed Unit

16.03.2021 - Japan’s Ajinomoto has entered into exclusive negotiations with French fermentation firm METabolic EXplorer to sell its entire stake in Ajinomoto Animal Nutrition Europe (AANE), based in Amiens, France. The company said the sale its part of a strategic reshaping of its portfolio and a restructuring of non-core businesses.

The proposal is for METEX to buy AANE for €15 million, payable in two installments – €8 million upon completion and €7 million within six months of closing. The transaction could be completed by April 2021 at the earliest.

METEX said the planned acquisition is a major step forward in its goal to become a leader in the global market for functional ingredients made through fermentation. According to the French company, AANE is Europe’s top producer of amino acids by fermentation for animal nutrition with projected turnover for the 2020-2021 fiscal year at more than €200 million.

If the merger goes ahead, the newly enlarged METEX would have 450 employees, compared with approximately 70 staff currently, with annual production capacities of more than 100,000 t/y at Amiens and 6,000 t/y 1-3 propanediol and butyric acid at Carling Sant-Avold.

In November 2016, METEX agreed to sell its technology portfolio for the fermentative production of methionine to Germany’s Evonik for €45 million. The deal included patents, essential bacteria strains and the inoLa brand.

Author: Elaine Burridge, Freelance Journalist