Ajinomoto Forks Over $800M for Frozen Foods Group Windsor to Expand in North America


Ajinomoto Co. Inc. is buying Windsor Quality Holdings LP, a food maker, for $800 million.

Windsor, headquartered in Houston, makes ethnic frozen foods, including the Ling Ling, Josè Olè, Tai Pei, Bernardi, VIP, Chili Bowl, Fred’s, Golden Tiger, Posada and Whitey brands. The food lines are sold in about 80,000 stores.

The buyer makes seasonings, processed foods, beverages, amino acids, pharmaceuticals and specialty chemicals. Tokyo-based Ajinomoto is making the acquisition through subsidiary Ajinomoto North America Inc. The deal should give the company better access to North America’s frozen food business.

Ajinomoto says the frozen food market in North America is valued at roughly $40 billion and is expected to grow. The deal is expected to close in November.

Baker Botts LP represented Windsor Foods on the deal. Jones Day provided advice to Ajinomoto.

Other food deals include Tyson Foods Inc.’s $6.2 billion offer for Hillshire Brands Co., the maker of Jimmy Dean sausages, and Hillshire’s purchase of Van’s Natural Foods for $165 million. For more on food trends, see “Snack Time.”

For more on cross-border M&A, see “5 Buyers Find New Customers Abroad.”

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