Viserion strengthens international agribusiness platform with Western Milling acquisition

USA — Viserion Milling, LLC, a newly formed subsidiary of Viserion International Holdco, LLC, has entered an agreement to acquire California based agribusiness Western Milling, LLC from Kruse Western, Inc., a move that the company says will strengthen its international agribusiness platform.

With a heritage dating back to 1935, Western Milling is one of the oldest and largest industrial providers of mixed grain cattle feed products to the dairy industry in California, which accounts for approximately 20% of all U.S. dairy output

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It also operates a large-scale fertilizer transportation and grain merchandising businesses with a fleet of natural gas-powered trucks and provides customizable animal nutrition products.

Western Milling’s portfolio includes, complete feeds, blended vitamin-rich feeds, pelleted feeds for both poultry and branded pet foods, rolled grains, supplements, and other grain commodities, including millrun, molasses, rice bran and whey.

As part of the acquisition Viserion is acquiring Western Milling’s facilities in Visalia, Hanford and Famoso, California, US; Hereford, Texas, US; and Buckeye, Arizona, US.

“Western Milling has been a well-respected cornerstone of California’s agriculture industry for nearly a century,” said Aaron Wiegand, chief executive officer of Viserion.

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“We are thrilled to acquire this outstanding, multifaceted company whose feed mill and fertilizer operations will complement Viserion International’s existing grain-handling and commodity trading offerings.

Chad Pinter, currently chief financial officer, will succeed Kevin Kruse as chief executive officer following the completion of the acquisition. Kruse, who is the grandson of Western Milling’s founder Otto Kruse, will continue with the company as executive chairman.

“Viserion International’s domestic growth plans will be significantly amplified by Viserion Milling’s comprehensive portfolio of agribusiness units and established presence in the California dairy market,” said Jason M. Kellman, managing partner and chief investment officer of Pinnacle.

“Following Viserion International’s recent portfolio acquisition of 10 grain elevator facilities from Zen-Noh Grain Corp., we are pleased that the company continues to grow into one of the leading agricultural merchants in the US.”

Last year, Viserion acquired 10 grain elevator facilities across five states along the Mississippi and Ohio rivers with a total storage capacity of approximately 25 million bushels.

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