McLeod acquires six tea gardens in Uganda

December 23rd, 2009 - 8:58 pm ICT by IANS  

Kolkata, Dec 23 (IANS) The world’s largest tea producer, the city-based McLeod Russel, Wednesday said it was close to acquiring six gardens in Uganda.
“We expect to hike production at these gardens to 20 million kgs (kilograms) yearly in the next three-four years from 15 million kgs now,” company managing director Aditya Khaitan told reporters at a press conference.

McLeod said it would pay $30 million to acquire 100 percent stake in Rwenzori Tea Investments — the holding company of the six Ugandan gardens — through its British arm Borelli Tea Holdings.

After the completion of acquisition, McLeod’s total annual tea output would touch 96 million kgs, Khaitan said, adding that his company expected sales of $30 million and a net profit of $7 million annually from these gardens.

McLeod Russel had in 2005 acquired Williamson Tea Assam from the London-based Magor family, picked up Hindustan Lever’s entire stake in Assam’s Doomdooma Tea in December the same year, and acquired another British tea firm, Moran Holdings, in 2007.

McLeod Russel, through Borelli Tea, also acquired Phu Ben Tea Co of Vietnam earlier this year.

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