Natural resources company Alico Inc. (Nasdaq: ALCO) has purchased two Florida citrus producers and intends to close a deal for another in the first quarter of 2015.
The three companies that were purchased include Orange-Co LP, Gator Grove and 734 Citrus Holdings LLC, which does business as Silver Nip Citrus. Based on 2014 performance, Alico's adjusted Ebitda is expected to increase from $21 million to roughly $58 million.
Alico agreed to pay a total of $363 million for the three companies, making the Fort Myers, Florida-based agribusiness the largest citrus producer in the U.S., with total pro forma 2014 production of 10 million boxes annually.
The $72 million sale of Silver Nip, based in Frostproof, includes 7,434 acres of land. The Silver Nip Citrus acquisition will be financed with the rollover of its existing credit facilities totaling $43 million and the issuance of approximately 0.8 million shares of Alico common stock.
Orange-Co, based in Arcadia, assets include approximately 20,263 acres, which comprises one of the largest contiguous citrus grove properties in the state of Florida. The $274 million Orange-Co acquisition was financed with proceeds from Alico's recently announced $97 million sale of its sugarcane assets and a portion of the proceeds from Alico's new long-term debt facilities and related credit lines. The Orange-Co acquisition closed on December 2, 2014.
Gator Grove, based in Lakeland, was sold for $16.6 million and included approximately 1,241 acres of land. Alico financed the deal with cash on hand. The deal was closed in September.
Alico owns more than 142,000 acres of land in central and southwest Florida, which it puts to a variety of uses, mostly cattle raising and citrus fruit growing.