AGT completes purchase of bulk loading sites

by World Grain Staff
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REGINA, SASKATCHEWAN, CANADA — AGT Food and Ingredients Inc. announced on June 2 the completion of the purchase of the assets of West Central Road & Rail Ltd. by AGT’s wholly owned subsidiary, Alliance Pulse Processors Inc. The acquisition includes five bulk loading sites located in Saskatchewan, Canada, which were purchased for a purchase price of approximately C$22 million.

“We are pleased with our acquisition of these assets and we are eager to begin the integration process to bring these assets into our bulk handling system. Facilities in our legacy business in Canada have been capacity-constrained, with high levels of production and customer demand resulting in our need to use some of our value-added processing infrastructure to do bulk loading programs. Transportation and loading assets are important to our legacy business, especially in the current supply and production environment for agri-food markets globally. Significant production levels are available in origins like Canada and the U.S., mirrored by demand and supply requirements in markets like Turkey and India. With our relationship with producers of both pulses and durum wheat, we have the ability to match origination and production to demand and supply requirements, and these assets allow us to use available and efficient modes of transportation to create smooth product flows from farm to customer,” said Murad Al-Katib, president and chief executive officer of AGT.

Acquisition of the assets is a key part of the company’s growth plan to support its pulses business in Canada and Turkey, as well as its durum wheat and pasta business, he said.

“AGT’s ability to originate and load bulk quantities of lentils, peas, durum wheat and other specialty crops and grains for shipment has been a growing part of our business, and we need to boost capacity there while returning value-added capacity back to our facilities in Canada that are currently doing bulk load lentil business,” Al-Katib said. “With the estimated high production in Canada for pulses and durum wheat, we view this turnkey acquisition as providing augmented capacity, particularly in peak shipping windows. We expect this acquisition to benefit AGT in the upcoming fall harvest in Canada.”

Prior to the closing of the transaction, West Central Road & Rail Ltd was a transloader based in Eston, Saskatchewan, Canada, operating five facilities capable of receiving grains, pulses, oilseeds and special crops locally, which are transloaded into railcars for national and international shipments. Through its wholly-owned subsidiary, Goals Marketing Inc., the group was also engaged in purchasing grains, pulses, oilseeds and special crops directly from producers.

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