May 14, 2008 / 7:43 AM / 10 years ago

Strauss to buy coffee business in Albania, Kosovo

TEL AVIV, May 14 (Reuters) - Israel’s Strauss Group (STRS.TA) said on Wednesday it agreed to acquire from Italy’s Doncafe its operations in Albania, Kosovo and Macedonia for 7.5 million euros ($11.60 million).

The operations had sales of 4.5 million euros in 2007, mainly in the area of espresso and specialty coffee drinks and the activities are profitable, Strauss said in a statement to the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange.

Strauss, Israel’s second-largest food company, already owns the Doncafe label in several former Yugoslavian countries such as Serbia and Montenegro.

Strauss said it will finance the acquisition from its own resources and does not expect to invest substantial amounts in the near future as a result of the deal.

Strauss is a market leader in roast and ground coffee in central and eastern Europe and the second-largest coffee company in Brazil.

    Earlier this month private equity firm TPG [TPG.UL] agreed to buy a 25 percent stake in Strauss’s coffee operations for $288 million.

    Strauss’s coffee business is incorporated under Strauss Coffee BV, a wholly owned Dutch subsidiary.

    Strauss Coffee is the seventh largest coffee company in the world in terms of green coffee consumption.

    Reporting by Tova Cohen; editing by Sue Thomas

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