Goldcrop poised to take over rival Croplink as deal agreed

Seed and farm chemical firms to trade as Goldcrop subject to competition approval

Seed and agrichemical distributor Goldcrop is set to take over rival Croplink. Photograph: Bryan O’Brien

Seed and agrichemical distributor Goldcrop is set to take over rival Croplink. Photograph: Bryan O’Brien

 

Seed and agrichemical distributor Goldcrop is set to take over rival Croplink in a deal recently agreed between the pair.

Carrigtwohill, Co Cork-based Goldcrop confirmed on Tuesday that Croplink’s owner and managing director Jim Droney has agreed to join forces with its competitor.

Croplink, which sells weedkillers and other products that protect crops to farmers and commercial food growers, will remain as an independent business within the enlarged group.

Mr Droney and his colleague Thomas Delaney are staying with the company. The Competition and Consumer Protection Commission must approve the transaction.

Businessman Michael Murphy set up Goldcrop through a management buyout of fuel distributor Suttons agriculture division in 1984.

It processes and distributes seeds, agricultural chemicals, packaging, hardware and other products to farmers, horticulturists and organisations such as sports clubs.

Cork and Louth

Accounts show it earned pretax profits of €841,000 on sales of €47.3 million last year. It employs 75 people in Cork and Co Louth.

Mr Droney, a former country manager for Shell Agrochemicals, established Croplink in Ballyvaughan in Co Clare 15 years ago. It had net assets of €3 million at the end of 2014.

Goldcrop director John Murphy predicted that Mr Droney’s experience would help the group further develop its position in the industry.

“The industry also faces challenges including changing legislation, uncertainties regarding future chemistry, industry mergers and acquisitions, and farm enterprise profitability,” he said. “It is our opinion that, through the combined merits of both organisations, we can create an operation best-placed to deliver on these opportunities and challenges.”

Best option

Mr Droney said he had been conscious for some time of the need to invest further in his company’s infrastructure and resources to grow its business.

“Taking everything into consideration I am firmly of the opinion that being part of the Goldcrop group represented the best option going forward. And I am very confident that, together, we can deliver benefits for all stakeholders, suppliers, distributors and end-users.”