COFCO seeks international mergers, acquisitions
In in latest bid to build up a global supply chain, China’s leading food trader has set up a new trading office in Canada.
Food trader China National Cereals, Oils and Foodstuffs Corp. (COFCO Agri), is seeking out international mergers and acquisitions (M&A), according to China Daily.
COFCO’s president, Yu Xubo, said oilseeds, such as soybean and rapeseed, and animal feed will be the company’s main focus, and geographical targets will be North and South America, and the Black Sea region of Europe.
“With an adequate supply of staple foods domestically, we will shift our focus to sectors that are in demand in China,” he said.
Despite domestic grain stocks in massive surplus, Yu said China is facing grain shortages in the long term as water resources become scarcer and the area of cultivatable land shrinks.
Last week, COFCO opened a trading office in the Canadian grain hub of Winnipeg, according to CNBC, in what it describes as “the aggressive expansion of its North American agriculture business.” The company is said to be hiring grain traders and an operations manager to expand export and domestic trading.
In December of 2015, COFCO International agreed to purchase all the remaining shares in Noble Agri from the Noble Group.
Reuters reported in April this year that COFCO is set to increase its stake in Dutch grain trader, Nidera BV, in September from 51 percent to 65.5 percent, according to China Daily.
Around the same time, COFCO Agri’s chief executive, Matt Jansen, told Financial Times that the company is looking to list on the stock market by 2020.