Noble Group acquiring Andre's operations in Asia

by Emily Wilson
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Noble Group acquiring Andre's operations in Asia

Noble Group Ltd., a Hong Kong-based supplier of industrial raw materials and shipping, has entered into an agreement to acquire the Asian commodity trading operations of Andre & Cie, Lausanne, Switzerland, which filed for bankruptcy in March.

Noble said it was acquiring the business, made up of 16 companies employing 250 persons, for a nominal sum as well as issuing a guarantee of about U.S.$64 million in favor of the creditor banks of Andre Asia Companies to support their ongoing, underlying operations. Noble, which will operate the business as Noble Grain, said it is buying the entire issued share capital of the Andre companies.

The acquired entities are mainly involved in supplying grain, soybeans and soybean meal to countries in Asia, with primary focus on Singapore, Australia, Japan, Indonesia, Thailand, India, Pakistan, Myanmar, Vietnam and China. In the 2000 fiscal year, the 16 companies generated turnover in excess of U.S.$1 billion.