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Hiestand and Irish baker announce merger

Irish baker, IAWS, is to buy an additional stake in the Swiss convenience food company, Hiestand, to create the world leader in frozen bakery products.

The new company, Aryzta, is aiming for markets in Europe, North America, Australia and southeast Asia. It is expected to have a workforce of about 8,000.

IAWS, which already has a 32 per cent stake in Hiestand, is buying an additional 32 per cent from a private equity group, Lion Capital, a joint statement said on Monday.

The merger, which is subject to approval by shareholders and the regulatory authorities, involves a share swap and €30 million (SFr48.3 million) in cash.

Hiestand has production sites in seven countries and recorded sales of SFr740.6 million last year.

IAWS brands include Cuisine de France, Délice de France and Coup de Pates. It owns United States bakery brands, Otis Spunkmeyer and La Brea.

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SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR

SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR