Mexico’s Giant Bread Maker Bimbo To Purchase U.S. East Balt Bakeries For $650 million
In a major expansion of its global reach, Grupo Bimbo, the bakery empire owned by Mexico’s second richest extended family, has reached an agreement to buy East Balt Bakeries for $650 million, Daniel Servitje Montull, Chairman of Grupo Bimbo, said in a statement Thursday.
“This acquisition drives Bimbo’s growth strategy to expand our global leadership and serve better and more consumers. East Balt enjoys long-standing strategic relationships with the largest and most established brands in the world. We look forward to East Balt employees soon joining Grupo Bimbo’s family to continue growing in a joint way,” Servitje said in the statement.
Grupo Bimbo will finance the purchase with a long-term credit line, Guillermo Quiroz, Bimbo’s chief financial officer, said in the statement.
The transaction is expected to close in the second half of 2017, once regulatory approvals are obtained, Bimbo said. Atlas Advisors is the financial adviser for the transaction, while law firms Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton and White & Case are providing legal assistance.
East Balt said in a separate statement that selling to Grupo Bimbo, the largest baker globally, is an “excellent fit.” “Grupo Bimbo’s demonstrated commitment to the bakery category, complementary global footprint and unique asset base provides a strong platform to support customer’s needs,” the Chicago-base company said.
Founded in 1955 in Chicago, East Balt is a global bakery business that produces and supplies bagels, biscuits, English muffins, tortillas and breads in the U.S., Europe, Asia, the Middle East and Africa.
Grupo Bimbo was co-founded in 1945 by Lorenzo Servitje, who passed away in February of this year. Daniel Servitje Montull, Lorenzo Servitje’s son, became Bimbo’s Chairman and CEO in the 1990s.
The first bakery, which was founded by Lorenzo Servitje’s father, became Grupo Bimbo, a multinational corporation with 170 factories in 22 countries. Over the years, Bimbo has made several acquisitions. In the U.S., Grupo Bimbo’s brands include Entemann’s, Thomas’ English Muffins, Arnold, Nature’s Harvest Bread and Sara Lee (Grupo Bimbo purchased Sara Lee in 2011 for a reported $709 million.) With U.S. headquarters in Philadelphia, Bimbo owns six of the top twelve bread brands in the U.S.
Forbes Mexico’s 2017 billionaire ranking estimated the Servitje family’s net worth at $4.2 billion. Unlike Forbes‘ flagship The World Billionaires ranks, which focuses on individual or nuclear-family wealth, Forbes Mexico ranks include extended family fortunes.