Ornua secures €610m banking facilities to aid growth

State’s largest dairy product exporter says refinancing will help fund strategic plan

Ornua, the State's largest exporter of dairy products, has secured bank facilities worth €610 million as it plans future growth. The five-year facilities, which were oversubscribed, will replace the Kerrygold-exporter's existing €420 million facilities.

The refinancing for the company, which exports to 110 countries, includes a €260 million revolving credit facility to fund its own capital requirements and international growth strategy, and €350 million to fund the working capital of the company’s dairy processors. Additionally, a further €100 million is available if required.

"The successful refinancing ensures that Ornua retains access to the banking liquidity it needs to continue implementing our strategic five-year growth plan, Ornua 2021, following the removal of milk quotas in 2015, and delivering strong product price returns for Irish dairy farmers," said Donal Buggy, group finance director at Ornua.

"Not only does it strengthen our capital structure but it also provides continued working capital support to our member suppliers and ultimately the dairy community across Ireland. "


Ornua, which has annualised sales of around €2 billion, recently launched the Kerrygold butter brand in South Korea and its Kerrygold cheese product in Singapore. The company also acquired FJ Need, a UK-based cheese ingredients company.

The company aims to generate €1 billion in sales from its Kerrygold brand, which also includes yogurts and cream liqueurs.

Banks involved in the deal announced on Monday included AIB, Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Barclays, HSBC, Rabobank and Ulster Bank.

“It is particularly pleasing that we have retained the same group of Irish and international banking partners, and we note that the deal was significantly oversubscribed, demonstrating their continued support for Ornua and the Irish dairy industry,” said Mr Buggy.

Peter Hamilton

Peter Hamilton

Peter Hamilton is a contributor to The Irish Times specialising in business