SunOpta Inc. (NasdaqGS:STKL – News) (Toronto:SOY.TO – News) today announced Opta Minerals Inc. has acquired 67% of the outstanding common shares of MCP Mg-Serbien SAS (“MCP”) of France. The transaction includes an option to acquire the remaining 33% minority interest on similar terms. For fiscal 2007 MCP recorded revenues of approximately US$6.3 million selling ground magnesium products. Opta has also secured an option to purchase a majority position in an associated company located in Europe which is focused on the production of magnesium ingots.
The acquisition continues to expand Opta’s business capabilities in Europe and complements existing operations which supply a wide range of magnesium based desulphurization products in the United States, Canada and Europe from operations in Indiana, Ontario and Slovakia.
MCP operates its production facility in Romans-sur-Isere, France and employs approximately 21 people. The plant is currently operating at approximately one-third capacity providing ample room for future expansion. The addition of MCP further increases Opta’s position in the industrial minerals business and further expands its current position as a key service provider to the steel industry.
David Kruse, President and CEO of Opta Minerals Inc., commented. “This transaction is a continuation of the global expansion of Opta Minerals. MCP sells magnesium products to a variety of industries in Europe including integrated steel mills and provides Opta Minerals with an entirely new customer base within the European Union. The facility in Romans-sur-Isere will complement our facilities in Walkerton Indiana, Waterdown Ontario and Kosice Slovakia. We will continue to provide unparalleled customer service and quality products to an entirely new customer base in Europe as we position ourselves for growth in both the industrial minerals and abrasive markets in that region.”
The purchase price was US$1.1 million in cash. The acquisition is expected to be immediately accretive to Opta Minerals’ earnings.
About SunOpta Inc.
SunOpta Inc. is an operator of high-growth ethical businesses, focusing on integrated business models in the natural and organic food, supplements and health and beauty markets. The Company has three business units: the SunOpta Food Group, which specializes in sourcing, processing and distribution of natural and organic food products integrated from seed through packaged products; Opta Minerals Inc. (Toronto:OPM.TO – News) (66.7% owned by SunOpta), a producer, distributor, and recycler of environmentally friendly industrial materials; and SunOpta BioProcess Inc. which engineers and markets proprietary steam explosion technology systems for the pulp, bio-fuel and food processing industries. Each of these business units has proprietary products and services that give it a solid competitive advantage in its sector.
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About Opta Minerals Inc.
Opta Minerals Inc. is a vertically integrated provider of custom process optimization solutions and related materials for use primarily in the steel, foundry, loose abrasive cleaning, roof shingle granules and municipal water filtration industries. With its head office in Waterdown, Ontario, the Company also has production and distribution facilities in Ontario, Quebec, Louisiana, South Carolina, Virginia, Maryland, Ohio, Indiana, Michigan, New York and Kosice Slovakia and one of the broadest product lines in the industry.
Jeremy N. Kendall, Chairman
Steve Bromley, President & CEO
John Dietrich, Vice President & CFO
Tony Tavares, Chief Operating Officer
Susan Wiekenkamp, Information Officer
905-455-2528, ext. 103
Lytham Partners, LLC
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Source: SunOpta Inc.