DUBAI - United Arab Emirates food and beverages group Agthia said on Thursday its board approved a proposed acquisition of 60% of Egyptian snacks company Abu Auf Holding worth 2.92 billion Egyptian pounds ($154.99 million).
Agthia, majority owned by the Abu Dhabi government through state investor ADQ, has since late 2020 made a string of acquisitions in the region, including previously in Egypt, as it seeks to become one of the top food industry players in the Middle East.
ADQ's acquisitions in Egypt include buying $1.85 billion worth of stakes in five listed companies in April. In May, the UAE's state news agency said ADQ will allocate $10 billion in investment for projects with Egypt and Jordan, including agriculture, pharmaceuticals, minerals, petrochemicals and textiles.
Agthia is seeking to acquire the majority stake in Abu Auf, also known as Auf Group, through its subsidiary AG Synergy Holding 1 RSC Ltd (Synergy Holdco) from existing shareholders Ahmed Auf, Mohamed Auf, Ayman Auf and Tanmeya Energy BV, a vehicle managed by Tanmiya Capital Ventures (TCV), it said in a stock exchange filing.
After completion of the deal, which is subject to regulatory conditions, the founders will hold 30% and TCV, an Egyptian private equity firm which invested in Abu Auf in 2019, will hold a 10% stake.
Abu Auf is a manufacturer, distributor and operator of retail stores and kiosks of speciality products and healthy snacks, including coffee, nuts, dates, dried fruits, and other kitchen essentials in Egypt, Agthia said.
It has more than 190 branches in Egypt and sells its products to grocery retailers and luxury hotels.
"Auf Group is an important strategic target for Agthia," Agthia Group CEO Alan Smith said in a statement.
"In addition to immediate access to new revenue streams and product lines, we are excited to expand our presence in Egypt and utilise the acquisitions made last year to further strengthen our operations and market revenue base."
Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer LLP and Matouk Bassiouny & Hennawy are acting as Agthia's legal counsel and CI Capital as financial adviser to Agthia.
EFG Hermes advised Auf Group and TCV, it said in a statement.
(Reporting by Yousef Saba, Editing by Jane Merriman)