Saturday, August 1, 2015

McDonald's supplier buys Chester County site in $400M deal

One year after Brazil's Marfrig Alimentos bought the Conshy company, it's selling the trucking arm to Reyes' Martin-Brower unit

McDonald's supplier buys Chester County site in $400M deal

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Marfrig Alimentos SA, the Brazilian firm that bought Herb Lotman's Keystone Foods, the West Conshohocken meat processor that invested the Chicken McNugget, last year for $1.3 billion, has agreed to sell Keystone's trucking and distribution unit, including its Coatesville plan (which employs 165) and others in the Midwest, to Illinois-based Reyes Holdings' Martin-Brower Logistics Co. LLC, for $400 million.

Like Keystone, Martin-Brower is a distributor and processor for McDonald's, the fast-food chain that holds half the US hamburger-joint market. Marfrig sold the business as sales, profits and share prices are down at its diversified meat-packing operations, Bloomberg reports here. Boss Mario Molina told Bloomberg he'd planned to sell the trucking business all along.  

"It's a good match. Our locations are where they aren't," at four US sites and other cities in Europe and Asia, Jay Pomeroy, spokesman at Keystone, told me. I asked if volatile meat prices and sales have hurt Keystone. "Every compnay is fighting a battle in the protein industry. But we're still humming," he said. 

"There are no plans to consolidate" Keystone's local operations with Martin-Brower plants in Connecticut, Virginia and other states, Martin-Brower spokeswoman Molly Reilly confirmed.


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PhillyDeals posts drafts, transcripts and updates of Joseph N. DiStefano's columns and stories about Philly-area business, which he's been writing since 1989.

DiStefano studied economics, history and a little engineering at Penn and taught writing at St. Joseph's. He has written thousands of columns and articles for the Inquirer, Bloomberg and other media, wrote the book Comcasted, and raised six children with his wife, who is a saint.

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Reach Joseph N. at JoeD@phillynews.com or 215 854 5194.

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