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Ardo / Dujardin merger approved

10 September 2014

Ardo and Dujardin Foods are pleased to report that the merger of Ardo and Dujardin Foods has been approved by the competition authorities in all of the countries where we are active. No restrictions or conditions have been placed on the merger.

Due to the legal and financial steps that still need to be completed, the official merger will not take place until the 31st of December 2014. In the meantime, we shall focus on our strategy, organisation, and an implementation plan that will bring together our potential synergies for maximum benefit.

Our ambition
Our primary objective is for the new Ardo to continue to develop as a financially successful business, which invests in the future. Our ambition here, which will enable us to achieve this objective, is to expand and further strengthen our already market-leading position in fresh frozen vegetables & fruit, fresh frozen herbs & ingredients, through a dedicated segment-specific approach for Retail, Foodservice and Industrial customers.

Our structure
The future roles of the family shareholders and the role of Rik Jacob will be as follows:

Board of Directors
On the completion of the merger, the Group will operate with a Board of Directors consisting of the seven family shareholders: Bernard, Ignace, Jan, Marc, Paul, Philippe and Xavier Haspeslagh. In addition, two to three independent non-executive directors will be appointed. Philippe Haspeslagh will chair the Board.

Executive Committee
The Group will be run by an Executive Committee consisting of three members: Jan Haspeslagh as Managing Director, Rik Jacob as Chief Executive Officer and Bernard Haspeslagh as Chief Operations Officer. The Executive Committee will take their decisions jointly and are collectively responsible to the Board on matters of strategy, investment proposals, the budget and supervision of all operational activities of the Group.

Jan Haspeslagh: Managing Director - retaining his existing role; following the merger Jan will have a particular focus on Sales, Marketing, New Product Development, Purchase of Frozen Food, and further optimization of the Supply Chain in our expanding group.

Rik Jacob: Chief Executive Officer - responsible for managing the Central Functions: Human Resources, Information Technology, Finance, Internal Business, Quality, and Purchase of Non-Food items.

Bernard Haspeslagh: Chief Operations Officer - responsible for Agriculture, Investments, Production Technologies, Health & Safety and Sustainability.

Additional active shareholder functions

Ignace Haspeslagh will take on the position of International Business Development Director(Agriculture/Production/Sales). This function forms part of Central Functions reporting to the Chief Executive Officer.

Paul Haspeslagh will support the Executive Committee as Executive Director.

Under the Executive Committee, a Group Management Committee will be created with responsibilities for the various functional domains.

Now that the necessary approvals have been won, we are looking forward to shaping the integration of Dujardin and Ardo building on the respective strengths of both companies.
The new Group will be called Ardo 
The specialised manufacturer will sell a broad range of fresh frozen vegetables & fruit, and fresh frozen herbs & ingredients. Ardo will operate 20 production, packing and distribution units in eight European countries, and will employ around 3,800 people. Ardo will grow, freeze and sell around 805,000 tonnes worldwide, with an estimated consolidated turnover of € 815 million.

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