Japan’s Itoham buys remaining 35% share in ANZCO for $100mn

By Addie Thomes

Meat processing giant ANZCO is now 100%-owned by Japanese company Itoham Yonekyu Holdings after it bought the remaining 35% of shares for $100mn.

Itoham has been a part of the business since 1989 when it entered as a 50-50 partner, and now it has bought out Nippon Suisan Kaisha (16.76% shareholder) and ANZCO Founder and Chairman Sir Graeme Harrison and management (18.24%).

The change in the ownership of ANZCO Foods will complete a planned succession process for the business. Harrison signalled his impending retirement in 2015 and will now do so at the next ANZCO Foods Annual General Meeting in March 2018.

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Itoham has signalled that it will not be making any significant changes to the business operations of ANZCO in the foreseeable future – the company currently turns over around $1.45bn and in 2016 was New Zealand’s fifth largest exporter.

ANZCO’s network comprises eight offshore offices and 3,000 staff, most of which work in New Zealand.

Harrison has labelled the investment as a vote of confidence in New Zealand’s meat industry, and says he will turn his attention to farming full-time after he leaves his role at ANZCO.

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