Del Monte sells its seafood business to Korean food company

SAN FRANCISCO Del Monte Foods Company Tuesday announced that it has completed the sale of its seafood business, including popular canned tuna brand StarKist, to Dongwon Industries for nearly $359 million. The total buyout price including considerations for the business’ estimate of working capital which had not yet been totaled and finalized.

“The divestiture of StarKist improves Del Monte’s margin structure, eliminates a source of earnings volatility and reduces debt leverage,” Rick Wolford, chairman and chief executive officer of Del Monte Foods said. “This sale also increases Del Monte’s focus on faster growing, value-added, higher margin branded businesses, a key component of our accelerated growth plan.”

Included in the sale of Del Monte’s seafood business are manufacturing operations in American Samoa and Manta, Ecuador. Also rolled into the sale, StarKist seafood assets in Terminal Island, California and Guayaquil, Ecuador. Del Monte has said that its seafood business plant personnel have now joined Dongwon, as well.

Dongwon Industries has most of its business in fishing—about 28 percent of its Korean market comes from fish suppliers. More information about the company can be viewed at www.dwml.co.kr.

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