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JBS puts more assets on the block with $40m Lakeside Feeders sale

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Oscar Rousseau

By Oscar Rousseau+

17-Jul-2017

JBS president Wesley Batista was one of seven executives to enter a plea bargain in May
JBS president Wesley Batista was one of seven executives to enter a plea bargain in May

JBS Food Canada will sell its feedlots to MCF Holdings for $40m as its Brazilian parent company, JBS SA, offloads more assets following million-dollar fines and a corruption scandal.

It will sell Lakeside Feeders, a beef feed yard and adjacent farmland in Alberta, Canada, to MCF Holdings, a subsidiary of livestock business owner Nilsson Bros.

The transaction is still subject to regulatory review and approval, but should net JBS Food Canada around $40m, providing the acquisition is cleared by antitrust authorities.

MCF will continue to supply cattle to the JBS Food Canada beef slaughterhouse based in the city of Brooks, southeast Alberta, which employs 2,500 people.

Lakeside Feeders is one of the largest cattle feedlots in Canada with a capacity of 75,000 cows sourced from British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba. The site employs around 75 people, according to JBS.

MCF said it planned to offer jobs to all workers on the feedlot and surrounding farmland once the deal is closed. Its parent company Nilsson Bros owns a diverse range of agriculture-facing businesses based in Canada’s western provinces, such as Alberta and British Colombia. Companies owned by Nilsson Bros includes auction markets, livestock insurance and finance firms, as well as feedlots.

JBS continues to sell, sell, sell

For the Brazilian parent company of JBS Food Canada, the sale of Canadian feedlots is the latest in a string of sales as the business downsizes following the fallout from a corruption scandal.

In June, JBS’ holding company, J&F Investimentos, agreed to pay a record $3bn leniency fine amid a broader corruption probe. The huge fine came after seven senior JBS executives entered a plea bargain in May amid bribery claims. Their deal struck with Brazil’s Federal Public Prosecutors Officer resulted in a R$225m ($70m) fine.

At the time of fines, a JBS spokesperson told this site no assets would be sold to finance the penalties. JBS, one of the world’s largest meatpackers, announced a major asset sale shortly after this.

The business wants to raise $1.8bn through the sale of Northern Irish poultry firm Moy Park, US-based Five Rivers Cattle Feeding and a string of assets in South America to pay off debt.

The business also wants to sell its 19.2% stake in Brazilian dairy firm Vigor Alimentos SA.

Its Brazilian rival, Minerva, has been cleared to acquire JBS assets in Argentina, Uruguay and Paraguay for $300m.

Buyers for the other companies put on the market by JBS have yet to be found.

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