OMAHA, NEBRASKA, U.S. — Scoular said it is expanding its reach into new geographies and products with the completion of its acquisition of Legumex Walker Inc.'s (LWI) Special Crops Division, a global merchandiser and processor of special crops, pulses, and associated healthy, specialty food ingredients.
In September, Scoular entered into an agreement with LWI to acquire substantially all of the assets of LWI's Special Crops Division for C$94,000,000 ($70,494,455) plus the amount of net working capital at closing. The transaction was finalized on Nov. 24 after meeting all regulatory requirements. Scoular now owns the Legumex Walker name and its affiliated special crops business, while the seller of the business has changed its name to LWP Capital Inc.
The new-to-Scoular special crops business is engaged in primary and value-added processing of special crops at 14 operating facilities in Canada, the U.S., and China. It boasts a diverse product offering, ranging from various grades of pulses, including lentils, whole and split peas, edible beans, and chickpeas, to other special crops such as canaryseed, flaxseed, and sunflower seed. Nearly all of the more than 300 employees of the former LWI special crops business, including its management team, joined Scoular's ranks effective Nov. 24 and will continue to operate the business at the existing locations.
"We've been looking to enter the special crops market for some time, and we're thrilled to finalize the purchase of a business that brings a wealth of special crops experience and expertise to our growing company," said Chuck Elsea, Scoular's chief executive officer.
"We will invest additional resources to expand the business and pursue opportunities that result in more value for growers and a high-quality, reliable supply of specialty products for customers around the globe," Bob Ludington, chief operating officer for Scoular, said. "Our role in the market, whether dealing in high volume commodities or niche specialty products, is to connect local supply to global demand. We have a very long history — nearly 125 years — of working with producers to seek to the best markets for their production. We accomplish this by developing strong relationships with growers and consumptive customers to understand and meet their unique requirements. We also work closely with transportation and logistics providers to ship products by truck, rail, barge, or container."
Anthony Kulbacki will continue in his role as the executive responsible for the special crops business, now reporting to Ludington.
"This is terrific news for all stakeholders in our special crops business – employees, suppliers, producers and customers,” Kulbacki said. “We are eager to start leveraging Scoular's resources to solidify and expand our unique food and feed ingredient business. The addition of Scoular's expertise in wheat, canola and other commodities will enable us to create more opportunities for the producers and customers we serve."
Kulbacki emphasized the importance of Scoular's solid foundation and long-term commitment to agriculture, said that "this provides confidence for producers and enables us to invest in infrastructure that creates competitive advantage in serving these globally expanding markets."