Primark owner in £48m takeover of agritech business

("Cow" by wwarby is licensed under CC BY 2.0.)

Primark and British Sugar owner Associated British Foods has agreed a £48m deal to buy agritech business National Milk Records (NMR).

The cash offer, which is 87% higher than last night’s closing share price, is already backed by shareholders controlling two-thirds of NMR.

ABF is a £17bn-turnover food and retail group with dozens of brands, including Twinings, Kingsmill, Ryvita, and Blue Dragon.

Chippenham-based NMR was founded 80 years ago and today is a data and technology business focused on milk quality, herd health and genomic testing services. It also has sites in Wolverhampton, Harrogate and Glasgow.

NMR will join ABF’s agriculture division, AB Agri, which already works with over 2,000 UK dairy farms.

Trevor Lloyd, chairman of NMR, said: “ABF’s and AB Agri’s status within the UK agricultural sector and expertise in the dairy industry will provide a significant benefit to NMR’s customers.

“The backing of ABF will accelerate and de-risk NMR’s ability to deliver its strategic objectives, streamlining industry processes by creating a holistic business that can provide end-to-end data and analysis to ensure the long term sustainability, efficiency and profitability of UK dairy.”

José Nobre, chief executive of AB Agri, added: “NMR is a high-quality business which is extremely complementary and additive to our dairy strategy and offering to the dairy industry.”

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