Dreyfus, Amaggi sell stake in Brazil JV to Japan's Zen-Noh

SAO PAULO (Reuters) - French commodities trader Louis Dreyfus Company [AKIRAU.UL] and Brazilian soy processor-exporter Amaggi sold a 33-percent stake in their joint venture in Brazil to Japanese company Zen-Noh, a statement from Amaggi said on Monday.

The joint venture includes operations to source grains in northern and northeastern states in Brazil and a 25 percent participation in the Tegram grains terminal at Itaqui port in Maranhão.

Zen-Noh is a large agricultural cooperative in Japan and operates in Brazil through its subsidiary Zen-Noh Grain Brasil. Amaggi declined to give the deal’s value, which will give the Japanese firm the same share in the JV as the Brazilian company and the French trader.

The Tegram terminal in Itaqui is one of the new terminals under development in northern Brazil that will mean cargoes are closer to some export markets. Swiss trading house Glencore Plc GLEN.L and local companies NovaAgri and CGG Trading control the remaining three-quarters of the terminal.

Reuters reported in May that Dreyfus was willing to sell part of its stake in the terminal to book profits from its early participation in the project, according to an unnamed source.

Amaggi said the conclusion of the deal is subject to approvals by regulatory bodies in Brazil and abroad.

Itaqui’s Tegram is nearly 2,500 miles (4,000 km) closer to the Panama Canal than Brazil’s top soy exporting port of Santos, which gives it an advantage in shipping soy and corn to Asia.

The facility receives grains produced in the agricultural frontier area of Matopiba in the northeast and grains coming from the northern part of Brazil’s No. 1 soy state Mato Grosso.

Reporting by Marcelo Teixeira and Gustavo Bonato; Editing by Nick Zieminski