FMC Corp. (NYSE: FMC) agreed to pay $345 million for Epax AS, a Norwegian supplier of Omega 3 fatty acids, as a means to grow the Philadelphia company’s nutrition and health offerings.
Oslo-based Epax, which will be folded into FMC’s specialty chemicals business, is co-owned by private equity firm Lindsay Goldberg and Norwegian biotechnology company Aker BioMarine ASA under the joint venture Trygg Pharma Group AS.
The deal follows two other major acquisitions that centered on Omega 3 providers, an ingredient used in a variety of drugs and food supplements.
In July 2012, Royal DSM NV acquired Ocean Nutrition Canada Ltd. from Clearwater Fine Foods Inc. for $540 million. That deal was followed by German chemical maker BASF SE (ETR: BAS) takeover of Pronova BioPpharma ASA in January for $823 million.
According to FMC, the Omega 3 market is currently worth $2.1 billion a year and forecast to grow up to 15 percent annually. Omega 3 fatty acids are added to foods, such as eggs and peanut butter, for a variety of reported health benefits, including lowering triglycerides and blood pressure.
FMC tapped investment bank Bank of America Merrill Lynch (NYSE: BAC) to advise the acquisition, while New York-based Lindsay Goldberg hired Jefferies Group to run the sale process.
Oslo-based law firm BAHR and Weil Gotshal & Manges served as sell-side legal counsel.