Mizkan secures $2.2 bil. loan to buy U.S. pasta sauce business

Japan Economic Newswire |

Four Japanese banks on Friday extended a $2.2 billion (about 220 billion yen) syndicated loan to food manufacturer Mizkan Holdings Co. for its purchase of several major U.S. food brands from Anglo-Dutch consumer goods giant Unilever.

The dollar-based loan was extended by the Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ, Mizuho Bank, Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corp. and the governmental Development Bank of Japan.

The deal with Unilever totals $2.15 billion, topping Mizkan's group sales of 164.2 billion yen in the past year to February.

Of the six-month syndicated loan, the three megabanks provided a combined $1.9 billion and the DBJ $0.3 billion.

The banks will convert the loan to a longer term later this year after finalization of the purchase.

Apart from the syndicated loan, the DBJ offered a credit line of 50 billion yen to Mizkan based in Handa, Aichi Prefecture.

Under the deal with Unilever, Mizkan will acquire Ragu, a leading pasta sauce brand in the United States, the premium Bertolli brand, and two associated U.S. plants.

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