TasFoods buys Betta Milk

TasFoods is expanding its portfolio of premium Tasmanian dairy brands with the acquisition of the Betta Milk

Co-Operative Society Limited business. TasFoods and Betta Milk today announced that an agreement has been assets and brands. Established in 1956, Betta Milk has a reputation as a leading producer of fresh Tasmanian milk. The sale agreement includes Betta Milk’s recently upgraded export-accredited processing facility in Burnie as well as distribution centres in Launceston and Hobart. Betta Milk will complement and strengthen TasFoods’ existing dairy brands – Pyengana Dairy, Meander Valley Dairy and Robur Farm – and will expand its present distribution network.

The acquisition of Betta Milk is another step in TasFoods’ strategy to build a successful premium food business leveraging Tasmania’s unique environmental and marketing advantages.

“This is an exciting step forward for TasFoods and represents the acquisition of a well-known Tasmanian brand that is highly complementary to our existing dairy brands. We are passionate about helping our brands grow and thrive in markets across Australia and overseas, and we will continue to support the Betta Milk brand in the Tasmanian market where it has a strong and loyal following. We believe there are also opportunities in mainland and Asian markets to leverage our recently registered Van Diemen’s Land Dairy brand,” said Shane Noble, TasFoods’ executive chairman.

“TasFoods was born out of a desire to share Tasmania’s high-quality produce with Australian and overseas markets. The scale this acquisition will bring will further enhance the opportunity to continue to showcase the State’s finest product whilst retaining our solid, focussed market position in Tasmania. Betta Milk has been a long-term supporter of the Tasmanian dairy industry and we look forward to welcoming its dedicated and passionate team to TasFoods,” said Noble.

Discussing the transaction, Betta Milk chairman, Neville Latimer said that a compelling reason for the Betta Milk board agreeing to divest of its milk interests was the fact the company would remain in the hands of another highly regarded Tasmanian business entity and would continue operating from its Burnie plant, without compromise to current operations.

“The sale of the milk processing assets and brands will allow the board to focus on the company’s whisky business, Hellyer’s Road Distillery. Our whisky business is garnering strong interest from overseas thanks to the high-quality single malts it produces. The sale of the milk business will provide us with the funds to grow and expand whisky operations to take advantage of emerging demand from Europe, Asia and the United States,” he said.

The transaction is subject to final due diligence and approval by Betta Milk’s shareholders. All employees will be offered continuing employment under TasFoods’ ownership.
The purchase price for the Betta Milk processing assets (excluding cash and receivables, which will be retained by Betta Milk) will be approximately $11.5 million, payable in cash funded from internal and external sources including an $8 million fully underwritten non-renounceable rights issue. The transaction is expected to complete in late June/early July  2019.