Symrise Acquires Cobell, Expands Presence in British Beverage Market


31 May 2017 --- Symrise AG are set to strengthen their position in the British market segment for beverages. The Company has signed an agreement to acquire Cobell Limited from the Managing Partners. Cobell, which was established in 1999, is the largest supplier of processed fruit and vegetable juices in Great Britain and a leading supplier across Europe. Cobell ideally complements the activities and will enhance Symrise’s local presence and customer proximity.  

“Knowhow meets innovation – this is the guiding principle of our acquisition of Cobell. The Group is firmly anchored in the British market and operates with extremely high customer orientation. It thus represents an ideal match for Symrise. In recent years, we have seen increased demand for innovative beverage solutions. Together with Cobell we prepare the ground for accelerated growth and expand our footprint. By combining Cobell’s impressive application and manufacturing capacities with our strong portfolio of natural flavors and our joint technological knowhow we will become a driving force. In addition, we will significantly enhance our customer proximity and act as single source for beverage ingredients and formulations in Great Britain,” said Dirk Bennwitz, President Flavor Segment EAME.  
Symrise has been active for more than five decades in Great Britain and is a highly valued supplier to the Food and Beverage industry. After significantly growing the sweet and savory activities in the past, Symrise now aims to further drive growth in the British beverage market category which comprises annual sales potential of more than £100 million ($128 million). Cobell’s state-of-the art manufacturing sites will play a decisive role in reducing lead times and make Symrise a partner that is even closer to its customers.  
Cobell runs a modern plant in Exeter covering the full production cycle from sourcing ingredients, developing customer-specific recipes to blending and packaging products on an aseptic basis. The product range comprises juices, purees, cordials, concentrates and alcoholic drinks. Cobell generated sales of about £50 million (€ 58 million) in 2016 and employs 56 people. Symrise will continue to run Cobell’s activities under the well-established Cobell brand. 
“We are delighted to have found a strong new owner for Cobell. Symrise shares the same mindset culturally and from a business perspective. Cobell will benefit from Symrise’s strong access to an impressive range of natural ingredients, as well as additional technologies, such as in taste modulation.”
“Symrise on the other hand will be able to enhance its local supply chain and benefit from Cobell’s specialist sourcing and global supply base. Together we will be able to significantly increase our offering and differentiate ourselves in the market with tailor made solutions that fully respond to local consumer needs,” said Nick Sprague, Chairman and founder of Cobell.  
Both parties have agreed not to disclose financial details of the acquisition. Closing of the transaction is expected to take place at the beginning of July 2017.


Symrise AG


Symrise develops, produces and sells fragrances and flavorings, cosmetic active ingredients and raw materials as well as functional ingredients and solutions that enhance the sensory properties and nutrition of various products. The company’s nearly 30,000 products are mainly produced on the basis of natural raw materials like vanilla, citrus fruits, onions, fish, meat, blossoms and plant materials. The flavors, substances, perfume oils and sensory solutions are often central functional components for its customers’ end products. These customers include manufacturers of perfumes, cosmetics and foods, the pharmaceutical industry and producers of nutritional supplements, pet food and baby food.

With sales of more than € 2.9 billion in 2016, Symrise is among the global leaders in the market for flavors and fragrances. Headquartered in Holzminden, Germany, the Group is represented in over 40 countries in Europe, Africa and the Middle East, Asia, the United States and Latin America.

Symrise works with its clients to develop new ideas and market-ready concepts for products that form an indispensable part of everyday life. Economic success and corporate responsibility are inextricably linked as part of this process.

The company’s origins go back to the year 1874. Symrise has since grown to achieve a market share of currently 11 % – making it one of the leading suppliers of flavors and fragrances on the global market. A high level of innovation and creativity, an exact knowledge of customer needs and various regional consumer preferences as well as targeted expansion into new and promising market segments contribute to our company’s above-average growth rate. Today, Symrise has about 9,000 employees working at sites in more than 40 countries, serving over 6,000 customers in roughly 160 countries.

Since October 2016, the operating activities of the Symrise Group have been broken down into three segments: Flavor, Nutrition and Scent & Care. The divisions within these segments are organized according to business units and regions.

Each segment has its own research and development, purchasing, production, quality control, marketing and sales departments. This system allows internal processes to be accelerated. Symrise aims to simplify procedures while making them customer-oriented and pragmatic. It places great value on fast and flexible decision-making.

The Flavor segment contains the Beverages, Savory and Sweet business units. Flavor’s range of products consists of approximately 13,000 items, which are sold in 145 countries. The flavorings Symrise produces are used by customers to make foods and beverages and give the various products their individual tastes. Symrise supplies individual flavorings used in end products as well as complete solutions, which, apart from the actual flavor, can contain additional functional ingredients, food coloring or microencapsulated components. The segment has sites in more than 40 countries in Europe, Asia, North America, Latin America and Africa.

The Nutrition segment markets its nearly 2,000 products in 89 countries via four business units: Food, Pet Food Aqua and Probi. They deliver natural sensory product solutions for taste, texture, color and functionality in foods, beverages, and baby food based on backward integration processes for vegetables, fruit, meat and seafood. It also supplies natural-taste and acceptance- enhancing products for pet foods and sustainable marine ingredients for aquacultures. And there are also probiotics for foods, beverages and nutritional supplements with health-promoting benefits.

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