Groupe Lactalis, a French milk and cheese producer, has acquired Italian rival Galbani from BC Partners. Financial details were not disclosed, although the acquisition is rumoured to be valued at around €2bn.
BC Partners bought Galbani for €1.015bn from Danone, including debt of €770m. At the time, the dairy company’s sales were €1.1bn. Turnover has now reached €1.3bn, of which 23% comes from exports. Lactalis is Europe’s largest cheese maker as it already owns the Société Roquefort, President and Brie de Meaux brands while Galbani is Italy’s biggest producer of mozzarella, mascarpone and gorgonzola.
In June 2004, BC Partners refinanced Galbani to the tune of €758m, which allowed the sponsor to take out about €250m in a special dividend.