Wimm-Bill-Dann expands further into growing markets
presence by taking over a dairy producer in Georgia, which will
help supply markets in Armenia and Azerbaijan.
The dairy and juice giant said today that the acquisition is in line with its "declared strategy" of growing by taking over successful companies. Wimm-Bill-Dann has not released a price for the takeover, but said the acquisition will mark the firm's first production facility in the Caucasus region - an area in West Asia, between the Black Sea and the Caspian Sea. A spokesman was not available for further comment prior to publication. The firm has been going from strength-to-strength over the past few years, which have seen it expand its dairy production to meet growing demand in Siberia and the Urals. The acquisition also shows the firm is taking advantage of the growing markets in the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS). More recently the company entered into the realm of functional foods, with the launch of its first beauty drink aimed at improving skin using a blend of antioxidants and minerals, launched last month. The company claimed Neo Beauty as an industry first in Russia. Neo Beauty contains the company's 3D Regeneo formula - a blend of aloe vera, anti-oxidants, minerals and vitamins - which it claims has a healing, strengthening and regenerating effect on hair, skin and nails. The range consists of a probiotic drink and drinking yoghurt, available in a variety of flavours. Georgian Foods is the third largest dairy producer in Georgia and one of the largest dairy factories in Tbilisi, the firm said. The factory began operations in 2002 and produces both traditional and local varieties of dairy products, including milk, matsioni, sour cream and cottage cheese. The plant has been equipped with equipment from Tetra Pak. Last year also saw the firm post strong financial results, with Q2 sales rising 20 per cent year-on-year. Wimm-Bill-Dann bought a dairy plant in Surgut last September, deemed to be the largest of its kind in the region, in a bid to cut transporting costs of products to different districts in the federation. The Company produces dairy products the main brands, of which include Little House in the Village, Neo, 2Bio, 33 Cows, juices, such as J7, Favorite Garden, 100% Gold, Essentuki mineral water and Agusha baby food. The company has 37 manufacturing facilities in Russia, Ukraine, Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan with over 19,000 employees. In 2005, Wimm-Bill-Dann became the first Russian dairy producer to receive approval from the European Commission to export its products into the European Union.