Danisco acquire Genencor for $419 million

27 Jan 2005 --- Danisco says that Genencor`s intensive focus on research and development and world-class capabilities in enzyme discovery, optimisation and production will fill Danisco`s gaps in the enzyme value chain.

Danisco has acquired enzyme company Genencor International for US$419 million by buying out all of Eastman Chemical Company’s common and preferred shares. Danisco says that Genencor`s intensive focus on research and development and world-class capabilities in enzyme discovery, optimisation and production will fill Danisco`s gaps in the enzyme value chain. This will be combined with Danisco`s capabilities in enzyme application and development for food. The move is Danisco’s second major acquisition in recent months. Last May Danisco took over Rhodia Food Ingredients in a 320 million euro deal.
Danisco and Eastman currently each own approximately 42% of Genencor’s outstanding shares of common stock and 50% of Genencor’s outstanding shares of preferred stock. Danisco will acquire all of the outstanding shares of common stock of Genencor, other than those held by Danisco, Eastman Chemical Company or their respective subsidiaries, for $19.25 per share in cash. Danisco has entered into a definitive stock purchase agreement with Eastman under which Danisco will acquire all of the outstanding shares of common stock of Genencor held by Eastman for $15 per share in cash and all of the outstanding shares of preferred stock of Genencor held by Eastman for $44 million in cash, subject to adjustment in certain instances. Following completion, Genencor will be a wholly owned subsidiary of Danisco. Genencor traces its history to 1982 and has grown to become a leading biotechnology company with over $380 million in 2003 annual revenues. Genencor has principal offices in Palo Alto, California; Rochester, New York and Leiden, the Netherlands.
Danisco CEO Alf Duch-Pedersen told a conference that it is the company’s intention to buy 100% of the shares in Genencor and that the two recent acquisitions of Rhodia and now Genencor will provide Danisco with an enhancement in the cultures and enzymes businesses respectively. Considering Danisco’s trading partnership in enzymes with Novozymes Pedersen said it was “early days” to see how this would be affected. It remains to be seen whether Novozymes will react negatively towards Danisco following this takeover.
“Our acquisition of Genencor will enhance Danisco`s strong capabilities in enzymes for food and feed. Being an advanced and recognised biotech business, Genencor will expand our knowledge base significantly and broaden our access to a new important business area, industrial enzymes”, Pedersen said. The Danisco CEO said that he is hoping that the acquisition will be totally rounded off by the end of March, but in any event the companies expect closing to be completed by May 31, 2005, at the latest.

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