Syngenta sold its growing media products company Conrad Fafard to Sun Gro Horticulture on June 11, 2012, the companies announced. Under the new agreement, Sun Gro acquired all assets of Fafard U.S. and Canada, including the production plants and staff.
According to Derek Fee, the media contact for Sun Gro, the Fafard sale has been discussed for a while.
“It is a transaction that has been in the works for quite some time, although the negotiations are fairly recent,” Fee says.
Syngenta sold Fafard in order to focus on its long-term business strategy.
“Syngenta remains deeply committed to delivering against our core flowers and plant protection business strategy, which includes the development and delivery of new products, cross-category innovation and integrated customer solutions to the greenhouse and nursery markets,” Tim Kroenke, head of Syngenta Lawn & Garden North America, says in a press release. “However, to achieve our ambition of making plants easier and more rewarding for consumers, Syngenta is stepping up the focus on its core genetics and plant protection business, and divesting its interest in Fafard. By accelerating innovation further downstream in the value chain, Syngenta will be uniquely positioned to deliver breakthrough solutions that offer consumers a better plant experience.”
Sun Gro is one of the largest producers of peat moss and peat-based growing media in North America. Similarly, Fafard has produced and distributed growing media products to retailers and greenhouse growers for more than 90 years. Together the two companies are expected to create an extensive portfolio of professional growing products.
“This is a significant and exciting milestone for Sun Gro,” says Sun Gro CEO John Hill. “The strong position Fafard has built with professional growers and retail customers alike over the past 90 years makes it an excellent fit with our long-term strategy, our customers, our business and our employees. We look forward to having Fafard join our growing organization, and to continuing to deliver market-leading technologies to our customers throughout North America.”
To date, there is no word on whether Fafard will retain its brand name or customer base, but the employees at Fafard will continue working in their same positions.
“The focus is on the logistics like getting the employee base looked over,” Fee says. “There will be time to assess. Right now it’s business as usual for Fafard and Fafard customers.”
This Fafard sale is not related to the Quebec, Canada-based Fafard et Frères, which is also a part of the green industry and owns peat bogs. Martin Fafard, the company’s president, reassures clients and partners that this transaction does not involve at all Fafard et Frères and that the two Fafards are completely independent businesses.