Mondelez to sell its stake in Japanese coffee venture

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SHARE Mondelez to sell its stake in Japanese coffee venture

Mondelez International has agreed to sell is share of a Japanese coffee joint venture to partner Ajinimoto Co.

Deerfield-based Mondelez said selling its half ownership in Ajinimoto General Foods Inc. is part of the company’s effort to focus on snacks and cookies, including Oreos. The joint venture made and sold instant, ground and liquid coffee products and other beverages in Japan under brands licensed by Mondelez.

Mondelez said it expects to receive $225.9 million before taxes from the sale, which could be completed by the end of April.

Ajinimoto General Foods had $840 million in sales in 2013. The company employs 700 people and operates two factories in Japan.

RELATED: Mondelez wants to boost African coffee output Mondelez, DE Master combining coffee businesses

Mondelez announced in May 2014 it would combine its coffee business with D.E. Master Blenders. The new company, Jacobs Douwe Egberts, is expected to have annual revenue of more than $7 billion and will be headquartered in the Netherlands. The deal is expected to be completed later this year.

The combined company will sell Gevalia, Tassimo and Jacobs, which are Mondelez brands, and Senseo and Douwe Egberts from D.E. Master Blenders, formerly the Sara Lee coffee business.

Mondelez has said it would receive about $5 billion when the transaction closes and have a 49 percent equity stake in the new company.

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