UPDATE 1-Canada's Jamieson Laboratories in takeover talks-sources

Fri Dec 7, 2012 6:45pm EST

(Adds company comment; changes number of sources)

By Martinne Geller

NEW YORK Dec 7 (Reuters) - Canadian vitamin maker Jamieson Laboratories is in talks to sell itself, three people familiar with the matter said on Friday, continuing a spate of deal-making in the nutrition industry.

One of the sources said a deal is expected to be announced in the near future. The people declined to be identified as the talks are not public.

The company confirmed that it had been approached but would not comment on whether a deal was imminent or the identity of the other party.

"We're happy to be held in such high esteem by our peers and competitors," said Vic Neufeld, Jamieson's chief executive, in a statement to Reuters. "We're often approached by suitors. This is not the first time, but there's nothing more conclusive to say."

Jamieson has annual revenue of about $250 million and earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) of around $30 million, said one source, adding that investment bank Houlihan Lokey was advising Toronto-based Jamieson. Houlihan Lokey declined to comment.

The $30 billion vitamins and nutrition supplements market is going through a wave of consolidation as companies seek to capitalize on consumers' growing appetite for products that boost health and wellness.

Just last month, Britain's Reckitt Benckiser agreed to buy U.S. vitamin maker Schiff Nutrition for $1.4 billion after beating out Germany's Bayer. Germany's BASF agreed to buy fish oils maker Pronova BioPharma for $845 million.

Reckitt's offer for Schiff valued the company at 16.5 times EBITDA while BASF's bid for Pronova was at about 5.7 times EBITDA.

In August, U.S. consumer goods maker Church & Dwight Co agreed to buy Avid Health, which makes gummy vitamins, for $650 million. (Reporting by Martinne Geller in New York; Editing by Marguerita Choy and Andrew Hay)

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