Dutch poultry group Plukon to expand in France and Poland

Plukon Food Group is cutting into a number of European poultry businesses

Poultry processor Plukon Food Group has continued its European expansion by entering into an agreement to acquire French chicken business Duc Group for an undisclosed sum.

The move follows the recent announcement of plans to acquire a meat processor in Poland.

Duc said it had entered into the deal with Plukon to “ensure its financial sustainability and to accelerate its growth”.

The commercial court of Évry, France, has approved the deal and the takeover of Duc by Aurelia Investments BV – a wholly-owned subsidiary of Plukon Food Group – is set to move forward. The takeover is still subject to other regulatory approvals.

Once complete, the acquisition will see Plukon hold 97% of Duc’s shares.

The acquisition of Duc enables Plukon Food Group to further implement its retail strategy in France as a national producer,” said Plukon CEO Peter Poortinga in a press statement. “The current growth plans in France are strengthened as a result of this acquisition.

ho is Plukon Food Group?

The Netherland-based business claims to a leading player in Europe’s poultry market. The group operates eight chicken abattoirs, five processing facilitates and a number of packaging companies across the Netherlands, Germany and Belgium. It slaughters seven million chickens per week. With a 4,500-strong workforce, the business generated €1.4bn in turnover in 2015.

Plukon Food Group has guaranteed 802 staff will keep their jobs on permanent contracts for a minimum of four years. It has not commented further on issues regarding workforce.

Plukon subsidiary Aurelia Investments BV has committed to invest €20m ($20.9m) over a three-year period to increase poultry production at Duc and improve its production efficiencies.

However, Duc said in a statement that there could be “significant write-offs” by creditors. It did not provide further information.

In September, Plukon unveiled plans to take over Polish poultry meat processor L&B Wyrebski and invest in a new abattoir to grow the company’s domestic and foreign sales.

The group has submitted an application to Poland’s competition watchdog, whose approval is prerequisite to finalising the acquisition. Under Polish law, the procedure is compulsory for all mergers and takeovers of Poland-based companies if the concerned entities reported aggregate revenues of at least €1 billion worldwide, or €50m in the Polish market in the year that precedes the potential deal.

L&B Wyrebski said in a statement: “Establishing cooperation [with Plukon Food Group] will allow us to pursue the strategy of achieving a strong position in the Polish and European markets, and to build a new poultry slaughter house in Gruszczyce, fitted with modern machinery.

The amount of the investment was not disclosed. The statement said that Grzegorz Wyrebski, the company’s founder and owner, and members of his family, would continue their involvement in managing L&B Wyrebski after the takeover.

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