Bühler acquires Haas to add biscuit capabilities

By Oliver Nieburg

- Last updated on GMT

Bühler eyes opportunities for Haas equipment in growing Asian biscuits market. Photo: Bühler
Bühler eyes opportunities for Haas equipment in growing Asian biscuits market. Photo: Bühler

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The Bühler Group has acquired Austrian-based confectionery, biscuits and wafer equipment supplier Haas for an undisclosed sum.

The Haas Group employs 1,750 people and has factories in six countries with €300m ($357m) in annual revenues. It joins Bühler’s Consumer Foods business.

Keeping up to speed

Former Haas Group owner Johann Haas said the sale was driven by future processing trends for automation and digitization.

“Today’s market and technology trends, whose impact and speed will continue to increase, have prompted us to take this step,”​ he said.

“…Bühler offers precisely this environment. It is for this reason that we sought exclusive talks with them on the change in ownership…,”​ he continued.

Entering biscuits and eyeing Asia

Bühler specializes in equipment for chocolate mass and end products, but has diversified by adding capabilities in wafer and biscuit production for the first time.

“We operate in the same markets and often serve the same customers, but there is no overlapping of our products and services,”​ said Bühler CEO Stefan Scheiber.

Haas specialized in production equipment for wafers, hard and soft biscuits, ice cream cones, cakes and baked goods.

Haas equipment is expected to profit from Bühler’s strong presence in Asia, unlocking opportunities in a growing market.

Germar Wacker, who took charge as CEO of Haas from September 5, 2017, will lead the Haas business. He joined from aviation & aerospace firm Bombardier.

Bühler’s Haas acquisition is due to close at the end of 2017 and is subject to antitrust approval.

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