“Merger strengthens our shared vision”

27-10-2017 | |
Photo: Diamond V
Photo: Diamond V

Cargill and Diamond V “join forces”. This was announced this week. All About Feed talked to Jeff Cannon, president and CEO of Diamond V, about the benefits of the Cargill acquisition.

On October 24, US multinational Cargill announced that it has signed a binding agreement to acquire US company Diamond V, known for its fermentation based feed additives and non-antibiotic health solutions. With the acquisition, Cargill wants to grow bigger in the global animal feed additives market. Joining forces also mean that the pace of innovation will be accelerated. “This way we will create new world-class natural health technologies that will provide unique opportunities for customers and consumers alike”, says Jeff Cannon, Diamond V president and CEO, who is excited about the acquisition.

The merger will bring ‘new animal health solutions’. Can you give us a hint what this entails?

“The focus for new product development will continue to be in the areas of immune support and digestive health. Our goal is to develop innovative non-antibiotic product solutions that work naturally with the biology of the animal to improve animal health, animal performance, and food safety.

Why do you need an acquisition to do this?

“With the merger with Cargill, Diamond V can increase the pace of research and development of new tools and services that benefit animal producers, food suppliers, and consumers worldwide. By combining the expertise and people (practitioners, scientists, and technical experts) of 2 companies, we can speed up product development”.

The merger comes into effect in January 2018. Will there be a reorganisation, rebranding of products or even job losses?

“No. Diamond V will operate as a separate business under Cargill Premix & Nutrition. The current leadership team and reporting structure will remain the same. We will also not rebrand products. The Diamond V brand is built on nearly 75 years of science and service. Our company brand is respected and trusted worldwide, which is important to Cargill. Also, Diamond V product brands will be preserved and continue as a key element of the value proposition conveyed to the marketplace and to the customers we serve”.

Cargill also takes over your human supplement business. Will this sector also be boosted by the merger?

“Yes. There will be new opportunities for Iowa based Embria Health Sciences and its branded immune support and digestive health product EpiCor. This will be apart from Diamond V growth in the animal feed supplement sector”.

Will this merger change the way distributors of Diamond V are now located around the world and the relationship you have with them?

“No. Existing relations with Diamond V will remain in effect. We are extremely excited to combine forces to serve our customers worldwide in more effective ways than ever before. We see tremendous opportunities in developing and bringing new products to market, expanding in new markets, and helping our customers in new ways by bringing them the best available technologies and services.”

You think it is a good thing that large agricultural companies/feed companies take over (smaller) feed additive firms?

“Joining forces through this transaction is all about growth opportunities for both companies to meet current and future demands in the global marketplace. This acquisition strengthens both Cargill’s and Diamond V’s shared vision to develop innovative natural health technologies that will enhance healthy, wholesome, and sustainable food production to help feed the growing world population.”

Can Diamond V remain the company that it is today?

“Yes, only we will be able to accelerate and strengthen our leadership as a global animal health company”.

The purchase will encompass all of Diamond V’s business, including the human health business, Embria Health Sciences, and its branded product EpiCor®. Diamond V’s headquarters will remain in Cedar Rapids and the Diamond V brand will be the platform for future investments in natural solutions for safer animal food production.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed. The transaction is expected to close in January 2018, subject to regulatory approval and customary closing conditions.

Emmy Koeleman Freelance editor