Growing appetite for animal feed market

09:59 | 09/10/2012
Vietnam’s bustling animal feed market has witnessed two major deals recently with Masan Group branching into the industry, following the sale of CP Vietnam from Chinese to Thai interests.

In the latest deal, Masan  purchased 40 per cent of established Vietnamese-French cattle feed maker Proconco.

The group’s spokesman Danny Le said Masan Group’s Masan Consumer division made the $96 million acquisition of  Proconco from Prudential Assurance Private Limited and PCA International Funds SPC. Morgan Stanley advised Masan Group and Consumer on this acquisition.

The transaction will be closed after customary approvals in relation to the transaction were obtained, said Le, also Masan Group vice president.

“The acquisition lays the foundation for Masan Consumer to enter the attractive protein-based market, including meat, fish and seafood. The market has significant growth potential backed by Vietnam’s population growth and increasing per capita consumption of such products,” he said.

Masan Consumer aimed to provide Vietnamese consumers with healthy protein-based products subject to European standards, he added.

It plans to complete a “clean breed – clean feed – clean farming – clean processing – clean warehousing and distribution” chain by 2013 before launching a “Masan Consumer branded” protein-based product to the Vietnamese market in 2014.

Proconco established Con Co, a premier brand in animal feed, in Vietnam and has developed one of the largest nationwide distribution networks with almost 500 distributors in all parts of the country.

Masan Group’s principal lines of business include food and beverage, financial services and natural resources.

Last week, Thai-backed CP Vietnam vice general director Suwes Wangrungarun told VIR about that in June last year, China-based C.P. Pokphand acquired a 70.82 per cent stake from CP Vietnam for $609 million.

“However, CP Thailand recently bought this total stake from CP China via a deal worth over $2 billion,” Wangrungarun said. “At present, CP Vietnam is performing very well in the Vietnamese market under the management of CP Thailand.”

CP Vietnam is also reported to be interested in biting into its food business via potential merger and acquisition deals. “We’ll place more emphasis on ready-to-eat food, along with reinforcing our CP brand and marketing,” said company president Sooksunt Jiumjaiswanglerg.

At present, the food business accounts for only 10 per cent of CP Vietnam’s total sales and the company’s revenue grew at 29 per cent annually.

In September last year, US-backed Cargill Group completed its asset purchase of a Ho Chi Minh City-based shrimp feed mill from Japanese-invested Higashimaru Vietnam, giving its full ownership of the mill, which was built in 2008.

“We look forward to expanding our business and to working with Vietnamese shrimp producers and helping them succeed,” said Cargill Vietnam’s Aquaculture Division’s general manager Pedro A Curry.

By Tuong Thuy

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