GROWING NEW ZEALAND PET FOOD PRODUCER ZIWI IS BOUGHT FOR €900M

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FountainVest Partners, a private equity firm based in China, has bought a New Zealand pet food producer, Ziwi, for a reported NZ$1.5 billion (€900 million).

In a press release, Ziwi said the purchase would position the company “well for the future” and support the firm’s “ambitious growth plans”.

The statement described FountainVest, which has offices in Hong Kong, Shanghai and Beijing, as a company that focused on “high-growth consumer brands”.

Richard Lawrence, the Kiwi firm’s managing director, said the deal would support long-term “sustainable growth” by providing access to capital and global market intelligence.

“This partnership is about maintaining Ziwi’s high-quality standards and natural New Zealand-sourced approach to pet nutrition, while serving more pet guardians worldwide,” he said.

“This signing is an important milestone in Ziwi’s bold global growth ambitions, which was envisioned when it launched in 2004.”

GROWING NEW ZEALAND PET FOOD PRODUCER ZIWI IS BOUGHT FOR €900M

Lawrence said it would be “business as usual” for the company’s staff and that over the long term, new jobs and “exciting career opportunities” would be created in New Zealand and internationally.

“The management team will continue to lead the business, with executive management reinvesting back into the business,” he added.

He said Ziwi intended to keep its production kitchens in New Zealand and that the growth of the business and its product range would increase its demand for locally produced ingredients.

Describing itself as “one of the most established independent private equity firms in Asia”, FountainVest was founded in 2007 and opened its Hong Kong and Shanghai offices the following year, with Beijing launching in 2010.

While this latest deal represents Asian interests buying into New Zealand food production, Sial Paris Newsroom recently reported that Universal Robina Corporation, from the Philippines, had sold its 60% share in Unisnack ANZ, an Australian and New Zealand company, to its joint-venture partner, Intersnack Group.

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