The deal makes Lactalis the largest player in Brazil’s dairy industry. Both companies together will generate revenues of €1.5bn ($1.69bn), thus becoming the Group’s fifth largest operation globally, behind France, Italy, Canada and the US.
Itambé is the leading company in Minas Gerais, with revenues of more than €600m ($675m), five factories, more than 3,500 employees and collection operations from 4,000 milk producers. With this acquisition, Groupe Lactalis becomes the nation’s leader across all dairy categories - fluid and powdered milk, yogurt, cheese, butter and industrial products – with 19 production sites and 8,500 employees across Brazil.
Lactalis also becomes the leading milk collector, buying 2.3bn liters of milk per year (9.4% of Brazil’s formal milk production) in the main production areas. Lactalis already has a strong position in southern Brazil, while Itambé is the leader in the State of Minas Gerais, the country’s top milk producing region.
Lactalis entered the Brazilian market in 2013 with the acquisition of Balkis. In 2015, it expanded its operations with two further acquisitions: part of LBR’s assets, and ELEBAT, BRF’s dairy division. Lactalis do Brazil has 5,000 employees and 14 production facilities in eight states. The company offers consumers dairy products under a selection of brands, including Batavo, Président, Elegê, Cotochés, Poços de Caldas and Parmalat.
Itambé transforms 3m liters of milk a day to produce a portfolio of more than 160 dairy products-milks, yogurt, requeijão and milk caramel. The company has four facilities in Minas Gerais (MG) –Pará de Minas, Sete Lagoas, Guanhães and Uberlândia – and one in Goiânia (GO).
According to Kantar WorldPanel’s 2018 Brand Footprint report, Itambé is the fourth most popular FMG brand with Brazilian consumers in the dairy segment.