Temasek takes stake in Belgian malt producer

A man walks pass the Temasek Holdings office, on Feb 16, 2015.
A man walks pass the Temasek Holdings office, on Feb 16, 2015.PHOTO: ST FILE

PARIS (REUTERS) - French cooperative Axereal said on Wednesday (July 5) that Singapore's state investor Temasek and French farmer-controlled investment fund Unigrains had taken a stake in its Boortmalt unit, the world's fifth largest malt producer, through a capital increase.

French sugar group Tereos, a minority shareholder in the Belgian-based malt producer, also contributed to the capital increase which totalled 150 million euros (S$235 million), Axereal said in a statement.

The capital increase follows an announcement in February by Axereal, one of Europe's largest grain handlers, that it would build a malt processing factory in Ethiopia and a fourth production facility in Antwerp as it sought to tap into rising demand for beer in emerging markets.

"Temasek, based in Singapore, and Unigrains, a specialist in the agri-food sector, will bring real expertise on the valuation of our malt business and its outlets on international markets, especially in Asia," Boortmalt Chief Executive Yvan Schaepman said in the statement.

Axereal declined to detail the share of each participant in the capital increase.

Temasek Holdings, one of the world's biggest state investors, has a portfolio of around US$180 billion, mainly focused on Singapore and Asia in sectors ranging from telecoms to real estate, transport, financial services, health and agriculture.