Hormel Foods Corp. announced Oct. 31 that it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Columbus Manufacturing Inc. -- an authentic, premium deli meat and salami company -- from Chicago, Ill.-based Arbor Investments for approximately $850 million. The strategic acquisition positions Hormel Foods as a total deli solutions provider and enhances its other strong deli brands, such as Hormel, Jennie-O, Applegate and Di Lusso.
“We are pleased to add Columbus to the Hormel Foods family. Columbus has an outstanding reputation in the food industry and is well-positioned in the advantaged retail deli category,” said Jim Snee, president and chief executive officer of Hormel Foods. “Columbus is capitalizing on one of the fastest-growing areas in the retail grocery store with premium, authentic products that are on trend with today’s consumers who are looking for unique experiences, flavors and products.”
Snee said the acquisition of Columbus will serve as a catalyst for uniting all of the company’s deli businesses into one customer-facing organization.
“This acquisition significantly enhances our scale in the deli by broadening our portfolio of products, customers and consumers. The synergies we can unlock with this acquisition are clear, and I’m excited for the next evolution of our company,” he added.
Columbus CEO Joe Ennen said, “As a millennial-focused brand, Columbus has generated category-leading growth through a passionate commitment to quality, simplicity and time-honored recipes. In Hormel, we are joining an organization whose values and culture perfectly align with our own.”
Total annual sales for Columbus are approximately $300 million, with an expected growth rate in excess of 5%. Hormel Foods expects the acquisition to be modestly accretive to earnings per share in fiscal 2018. Full-year accretion in fiscal 2019 is expected to be 6-8 cents per share.
The company will continue to operate from California and will report into the refrigerated foods segment. The transaction is subject to customary closing conditions, including the receipt of regulatory approvals in the U.S.