Belgium/USA/France: Way cleared for largest malting group in the world

Boortmalt from Antwerp, Belgium, has cleared the way to become the largest malting group in the world. Cargill, the Minnetonka/USA-based agribusiness confirmed today that it will “enter into an agreement under which Cargill will sell its malt business to Axéréal's malt subsidiary, Boortmalt.”

The transaction will make Boortmalt the clear number one in the worldwide malt business with a combined capacity of about 2.9 million tons of malt per year far ahead of the other two French malting groups, Malteries Soufflet and Malteurop, each with about 2.2 million tons of malt per year. With embarking on a 60.000 t malting plant project on a greenfield site in Ethiopia (, 8.2.2017) which is scheduled to start operations soon, the new Boortmalt group will have 26 malt plants on 5 continents. In comparison Soufflet owns 27 maltings worldwide and Malteuop 26.

“This transaction would give Boortmalt access to a global footprint and offer further growth opportunities for Cargill's Malt business and its people,” Cargill said in a today's press statement. The transaction will be subject to regulatory and other approvals and is expected to close in the second half of 2019. Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

Earlier this week some information was already leaked from informed sources and informed exclusively about the intended deal on Monday (, 17.12.2018).

Cargill’s malt business employs 500 employees and has 15 plants across the globe, including in Argentina, Australia and Canada, where the company holds a leading position and where Boortmalt is not represented at the moment. In addition Cargill operates plants in Belgium, France, Germany, the Netherlands, Russia, Spain and the United States. The locations perfectly complement Boortmalt’s current footprint with only a few overlaps in Belgium, France, and partly the Netherlands and Germany.

Boortmalt currently operates 10 malting plants in Europe and produces and sells more than a million tons of malt a year. Boortmalt uses its strategic site at Antwerp, which was recently enlarged to 470,000 tons to become the largest malting plant in the world (, 8.2.2017),  to export 50 percent of its total production to emerging markets. A market leader in the United Kingdom and Ireland, Boortmalt is also a recognised producer of whiskey and speciality malts.

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