Wilbur-Ellis Feed acquisition expands US footprint, product line
The Washington state-based company is a division of the California-headquartered Wilbur-Ellis Company and is focused on marketing and supplying feed and feed ingredients for the livestock, aquaculture and pet food industries. It announced the acquisition of Ameri-Pac Inc. last week.
Ameri-Pac was a family-owned, feed additive manufacturing business that focused on products for animal nutrition, health and specialty items for livestock, aquaculture and pet food including vitamins, liquid vitamin blends, minerals, direct-fed microbials, antioxidants and green-lyte electrolytes, Wilbur-Ellis reported.
The deal is expected to grow the feed company footprint in the US, said Andrew Loder, president of Wilbur-Ellis Feed. “This expands Feed’s footprint in the Midwest,” he added.
“We have had a limited presence there and this immediately puts us in a geography that is conveniently close to our pet food manufacturing customers,” he told FeedNavigator. “The Midwest has been a targeted geography as part of our strategy to extend our reach east of the Rockies.”
The acquisition brings the company an immediate presence in the Midwest, he said. “This immediately puts on the map with a well-established company that has been in the Midwest for over 30 years,” he added.
Financial information other specifics regarding the transaction are not being released at this time, he added.
The animal health and nutrition company also was of interest because it fit with the company’s growth plans, said Loder.
“Ameri-Pac fit well with our growth strategy Empower2021,” he said. “Ameri-Pac is also seen as a leader in food safety, quality and regulatory and we wanted to continue to bolster our capability in this area.”
Ameri-Pac brings its work in value-added ingredients and premixes to the deal along with a range of antioxidant products, he said, adding, “Which, we will add to our current distribution network to expand their reach.”
“We felt both the premixes and antioxidants Ameri-Pac offered would complement well the many niche ingredients we were already providing our customers,” said Loder. “This also allows us the ability to be able to provide more value-added product and services to existing customers as well as new customers.”
The antioxidant line for both livestock feed and pet foods was of interest because of current market developments, he added. “Antioxidants are a growing segment and necessary for many manufacturers and it compliments well the customers we are calling on already.”
Additionally, the agreement brings about 40 employees and two, Missouri-based facilities focused on value-added products and services to the Wilbur-Ellis Feed portfolio, the company said. The current plan is to maintain the business facilities and employees in the area.
Now that the agreement has been announced, integration of the companies is the next step, said Loder. “Integration is clearly our focus now,” he added.
“We will continue to monitor closely the onboarding to ensure we have a seamless transition for customers and will provide whatever is needed to ensure we stay on that track,” he said. “We are actively working with the owners who have graciously agreed to stay on for a transition period to help us understand as well as we can the operation and history of this business.”
Wilbur-Ellis also is continuing to look for other, “complementary” companies as it moves forward, he said.