SÃO PAULO, Brazil – BRF S.A. sold its Argentina-based Avex poultry processing business to Granja Tres Arroyos S.A. and Fribel S.A. for $50 million.
The transaction includes a poultry processing plant in Rio Cuarto, which has the capacity to process 160,000 birds per day; and food-processing facilities in Llavallol and Villa Mercedes, which process more than 10,000 tons of products per month including margarines, sauces, olive oil and baking ingredients under various brands.
Avex has operated in Argentina since 1950 and employs 800 workers. The company makes food products under the Dánica, Manty, Delicia, D’Fiesta and Sierra Sur.
The sale of Avex is BRF’s second in Argentina. In December 2018, the company reached an agreement with Marfrig Global Foods S.A. in which Marfrig acquired 91.89 percent of shares in Quickfood S.A., a beef-based processed food company in a transaction valued at $60 million.
QuickFood operates three plants located in San Jorge, Baradero and Arroyo Seco with a slaughtering capacity of 620 head per day and a processing capacity of approximately 6,000 metric tons per month. The company produces hamburgers, franks, cold cuts and frozen vegetables.
BRF said negotiations are ongoing for the company’s Campo Austral beef and pork business in Argentina, in addition to its operations in Europe and Thailand.
“In the case of Campo Austral, we are already in an advanced stage of negotiations with prospective buyers and will make an announcement at opportune moment,” Lorival Luz, Global Chief Operating Officer of BRF, said.
In addition to the sale of Avex, BRF announced the restructuring of the company’s Receivable Backed Investment Fund (FIDC). The fund acquires credit rights originated from commercial transactions between BRF and the company’s customers in Brazil. The transaction is valued at R750 million reais.
Lastly, BRF signed agreements the company said will improve its debt profile in 2020. The new banking operations exceeded R1 billion reais.
“Since the strategy was to prioritize the divestment of Argentine assets as there were bigger doubts about the speed of executing the transaction, we decided to postpone by a week the delivery of the binding offers from Europe and Thailand,” Lorival explained. “The process remains quite competitive, with five different players contending for the assets. We expect this process to be concluded in January.”
BRF expects to receive offers for the company’s assets in Europe and Thailand until the end of the week and contractual negotiations will take place in early 2020.