OCG Cacao has grown rapidly since it was founded in 1997 and claims to have the most modern chocolate processing plants in Belgium, France and UK. It also operates sales offices in Germany and the USA.
Cargill believes therefore that the acquisition will give the group a significant foothold in the European chocolate market. OCG has a network of European facilities and supplies chocolate to numerous food manufacturers. Cargill says that these will now be complemented by Cargill's expertise in the origination of cocoa, the production of high quality cocoa products and significant financial strength.
Cargill also says that the agreement with OCG will facilitate the continued growth of the chocolate business, allowing it to maintain its reputation in the industrial chocolate industry.
OCG Cacaohas developed a significant position in the European industrial chocolate market. The company operates plants in France, UK and Belgium with 200 employees and has commercial offices in Germany and in USA.
This is just the latest in a line of recent acquisitions for Cargill. This month, the group also launched a public tender to purchase the shares of Romanian grain silo company Comcereal Alexandria. The announcement follows approval for the tender by the Romanian Securities Commission.
The company says that the deal will strengthen Cargill's current investments in Romania, which already include two existing grain silos. Cargill believes that Comcereal Alexandria's comprehensive network of grain storage facilities in the Romanian grain belt in the Teleorman, Giurgiu, Ialomita and Galati regions will perfectly complement these operations.
In addition, the group announced this month that it is set to construct a $50 million malt plant in Tula Oblast of Russia. Company spokeswoman Irina Kalygina told the Russian Vedomosti newspaper that the corporation is looking into the possibility of constructing the plant in the town of Yefremov, and that building work will probably start in spring next year.
The plant is scheduled to be launched in mid-2005. Cargill has not disclosed the final capacity of the future plant, but it is believed that the facility will produce beer exclusively for the Russian market. The executive director of the Russian Brewers' Union, Viacheslav Mamontov, believes that the capacity of the plant might be something in the region of 100,000 tonnes of malt a year.
Cargill is an international marketer, processor and distributor of agricultural, food, financial and industrial products and services with 98,000 employees in 61 countries. The company provides customer solutions in supply chain management, food applications, and health and nutrition.