MELBOURNE, July 16 Australia's largest poultry
producer, privately held Ingham, with annual sales of A$2.1
billion ($2.14 billion), said on Monday investment bank Investec
has been appointed to sell the business, a deal that could
attract private equity interest.
Australian food manufacturers have been highly sought after
by private equity and other Asian buyers in the past two years
due to resilient sales and solid cashflows, despite a slowing
Hong-Kong based Affinity Equity Partners last year bought
chicken firm Tegel Foods in New Zealand from private equity firm
Pacific Equity Partners (PEP) for A$460 million.
Bob Ingham, the sole shareholder of Inghams Enterprises,
which owns the Ingham Chicken brand, said in a statement he has
decided to sell the business "after long and careful
"Investec Bank (Australia) Limited has been appointed to
manage the process of identifying a suitable buyer for Inghams
from a broad range of potential bidders," he said.
Ingham said the sale process was expected to take several
months. The company was founded in 1918 and employs 9,000 people
across Australia and New Zealand, according to its web site.
Bob Ingham and his late brother Jack inherited the business
in 1953 from their father.
In other food deals, China's state-owned Bright Foods bought
importer Manassen from CHAMP Private Equity and Japan's Asahi
Group Holdings bought Independent Liquor from PEP and
(Reporting by Victoria Thieberger; Editing by Muralikumar