ICL acquires the holding company of Spain's largest producer of specialty fertilizers

ICL, a multinational fertilizer and specialty chemicals company, has acquired Grupo Empresarial Agromediterraneo, S.L., the holding company of Antonio Fuentes Mendez S.A., Spain's largest producer of specialty fertilizers, for an undisclosed sum.

The purchase includes Fuentes' line of proprietary liquid and soluble fertilizers and bulk blends, its production facilities located in Totana and Cartagena, Spain, as well as warehouses, port facilities and logistics centers located throughout southern and eastern Spain. Fuentes' 2010 revenues were approximately €113 million.

Mr. Yossi Shahar, ICL's Executive VP, Corporate Development said the acquisition of Fuentes' specialty fertilizers business, following ICL’s recent purchase of Scotts' Global Pro business, further demonstrates the firm’s intention to become a leading player in downstream, high-growth fertilizer markets.

Post the acquisition, Fuentes and its wholly-owned operating subsidiaries become a part of ICL Specialty Fertilizers, a business unit of ICL Fertilizers. ICL financed the acquisition from its own resources.

The acquisition of Fuentes establishes ICL as the leading supplier of specialty fertilizers in the rapidly-growing Spanish market. Fuentes markets a broad line of branded high-quality liquid and water soluble fertilizers (WSF) and bulk blends. It sells its products primarily in southern and eastern Spain, which accounts for 75% of the Spanish market for specialty fertilizers.

In these regions, sales of WSF fertilizers are growing by 8% to 12% per annum, compared to relatively flat growth for traditional fertilizers. Fuentes also possesses strong R&D capabilities in the liquid and soluble fertilizers areas.

ICL's acquisition of Fuentes represents a further step by ICL in its strategy to broaden its activities in the specialty fertilizers sector, a market which it has identified as possessing the potential for strong growth. It follows ICL's recent $270 million purchase of the Global Professional business of The Scotts Miracle-Gro Company (Global Pro).

These acquisitions establish ICL Specialty Fertilizers as a global $650 million specialty fertilizers company with a broad, recognized product portfolio of soluble, liquid, slow-release and control release fertilizers, strong global sales and marketing capabilities, production facilities in the US, EU and Israel, and a particularly strong presence in Spain, the EU's largest consumer of specialty fertilizers.

In addition to positioning ICL Specialty Fertilizers as the leading provider of downstream fertilizer products in Spain, the acquisition provides ICL with a strong platform for expanding its activities in Spain and elsewhere in the EU and North Africa. The acquisition also diversifies ICL Specialty Fertilizers product offerings, enhances its production and R&D capabilities and improves its geographic marketing reach.

13th April 2011

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