Singapore-based agribusiness giant Wilmar International said it bought 50 percent stake in Aalst Chocolate Pte in a bid to expand the business portfolio of chocolate ingredients in Asia.
Wilmar's acquisition is through its wholly-owned subsidiary KOG Investments Pte in Singapore-based chocolate maker Aalst Chocolate, it said in a statement on Thursday.
The deal was undertaken through a combination of a subscription of new shares in Aalst Chocolate, the purchase of the entire shareholding interest in Aalst Chocolate held by International Chocolate & Cocoa Holdings as well as the purchase of stakes from company founders Richard Lee and Connie Kwan.
"Wilmar is a leading manufacturer of specialty fats used in the manufacture of chocolates and compounds, and Aalst Chocolate, with its long experience and expertise in chocolate and compound-making, is our ideal partner to expand our offering and services to bakery products and confectionery manufacturers," said Kuok Khoon Hong, chief executive officer of Wilmar.
Founded in 2003, Aalst Chocolate is the first Singaporean brand that can produce both chocolate couvertures and compounds.
With 5 brands under its wing, Aalst Chocolate exports 98 percent of its products to over 50 countries all over the world.