April 21, 2008 / 9:07 AM / 11 years ago

Parmalat sells Newlat unit for 1 euro

MILAN, April 21 (Reuters) - Italian food and diary group Parmalat (PLT.MI) has agreed to sell its Newlat subsidiary to TMT Finance of Switzerland for the token value of 1 euro ($1.59), allowing it to rid itself of millions of euros of debt. Parmalat, restructured after it buckled under massive debts in 2003, said on Monday the deal would allow it to deconsolidate about 36 million euros of debt and amounts payable under finance leases.

“The sale will not have any economic impact on Parmalat,” it said.

Based in Lugano, Switzerland, TMT Finance has activities in agriculture and food production, including pasta.

Parmalat regained control of Newlat in 2006 after a court lifted a sequestration order on the subsidiary. The order had lasted for about a year as part of an investigation into Parmalat’s 2003 collapse.

Based in Reggio Emilia, Newlat has annual revenues of about 150 million euros. Its brands include Matese and Giglio.

Parmalat, known for its long-life milk, radically restructured itself and then relisted on the Milan stock exchange in October 2005.

It has successfully sued several banks that worked with its previous management.

Parmalat shares were up 0.7 percent at 2.1625 euros at 0900 GMT. (Reporting by Gilles Castonguay; Editing by Erica Billingham)

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