Aryzta raises €404m from Origin share sale

Deal boosts agri-services company’s free float

Swiss-Irish food group Aryzta has raised more than €404 million from the sale of 49 million shares in agri services business Origin Enterprises.

Aryzta confirmed on Wednesday that it placed the Origin shares with a number of institutions at a price of €8.25 each, raising €404.25 million.

The placing, in which Dublin stockbroking firms, J&E Davy and Goodbody, acted as joint bookrunners, will settle on March 30th.

Commenting on the outcome, Aryzta chief executive, Owen Killian, said that the strong demand for the shares reflected Origin's strong track record of sustaining earnings growth, generating cash and creating shareholder value.


The move means that Aryzta has cut its stake in Origin by almost 60 per cent. It will dilute the group’s earnings per share by around 6 per cent a-year and by around 5 per cent in 2015.

As a result of the sale, Aryzta’s financial statements will in future treat its remaining stake in the agri-services business as an associate rather than as part of the group.

Mr Killian said that this would simplify its reporting structure. “The transaction will benefit the free float of Origin Enterprises and transform Aryzta into a pure play in speciality food,” he noted.

Ahead of the transaction, Aryzta owned 85.3 million shares in Origin, almost 70 per cent of its issued capital.

The relationship between the two dates back to 2006, when IAWS group established Origin to focus on its agri-services and food businesses.

The remaining part of IAWS merged with Heistand Holdings two years later to form convenience foods and bakery specialist, Aryzta, which is listed in Dublin and Zurich.

Aryzta’s shares were unchanged at €64 ahead of the close of business in Dublin on Wednesday. Origin shed 5.83 per cent to €8.287.

Barry O'Halloran

Barry O'Halloran

Barry O’Halloran covers energy, construction, insolvency, and gaming and betting, among other areas