FRANCE – French multinational cheese manufacturer Bel Group, which already holds 82.5% of the capital of Mont Blanc-Materne (MOM), has acquired the balance of the capital from Michel Larroche and the management of MOM.

Dating back to the 2016 agreement of acquisition of shares, Bel exercised the promise to sell granted by the minority shareholders of the MOM Group and acquire the remaining 17.44% of the ordinary shares in 2022.

Following the completed transactions, Bel Group holds the entire capital and voting rights of the MOM Group.

The acquisition has positioned Bel Group strategically to strengthen its market in France and the US to achieve its long-term strategy to become the reference in the field of healthy milk, fruit, and vegetable snacks.

Furthermore, the investment in majority shares at MOM strengthens its product portfolio and enables the Bel Group to accelerate the development of a positive and profitable agro-industrial model through sustainable and responsible growth.

Following the transaction agreement, Cécile Béliot, Bel’s Deputy CEO, will succeed Michel Larroche as head of the MOM Group and will take up the responsibility of implementing strategic orientations that will enable the company to strengthen its position in the market.

Antoine Fiévet, Chairman and CEO of Bel, said: “The acquisition of the balance of the MOM shares completes a major strategic operation initiated in 2016. Bel and MOM share the same DNA.” 

The MOM group is a new asset that will enable the Bel group to become a major player in healthy snacking by meeting consumers’ needs and expectations and offering them a wide variety of healthier and more sustainable products.” 

MOM was founded in 2006 through the merger of Materne and Mont-Blanc, which allowed the MOM group to position itself as the leader in healthy snacks in Europe and the United States.

In 2021, against the economic and financial backdrop that remained complex, Bel Group showed resilience with consolidated sales totaling US$3,565.25 million, a decline of 2.2% versus 2020, reflecting a negative of 0.9% (US$31.44 million).

The decline is characterized by the impact of foreign exchange rate fluctuations, the COVID-19 pandemic, and the impact of changes in the scope of consolidation following the sale to Lactalis in 2021, of assets consisting primarily of the Leerdammer brand.

The Group anticipates a better sale this year with the launch of Nurishh, Bel’s first international, 100% plant-based food brand, as well as the development of innovative plant-based ranges for the core brands that are showing promising results.

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