Freshmax Group to pursue growth in international markets

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Today the Freshmax Board of Directors and majority shareholders have agreed to the sale of its New Zealand domestic produce trading and services business to T&G Global (formerly Turners & Growers).

The commercial arrangement is an opportunity for Freshmax to expand its international business through renewed investment in high-value produce categories, including pipfruit, summerfruit and avocados. Freshmax New Zealand was founded in 1995 and is recognised as an industry-leading, full-service produce marketer. The sale of its domestic markets business includes three market sites (Auckland, Wellington, Christchurch) and distribution services throughout New Zealand. The sale does not include any of Freshmax Group’s pipfruit, international, Australian or Intellectual Property (Innovar) holdings.

In announcing the sale of its New Zealand domestic markets business to T&G, Freshmax New Zealand CEO Andrew Common says the mutually beneficial deal sets up both parties for sustained levels of business growth.

“Both T&G and Freshmax have a strong reputation for delivering value to their New Zealand suppliers and customers. We also share a similar culture with largely complementary business models. The coming together of these two businesses provides greater sustainability and brings the potential for growth opportunities.”

Aligning the businesses will create ability for suppliers on both sides to access a wider market base and provide an expanded portfolio of high-quality product to customers, Common says.

After the deal satisfies final requirements, Freshmax will focus on strengthening its investments in New Zealand that support export growth.

Since its founding in 1995, Freshmax New Zealand has become a name synonymous with quality fresh produce and large-scale service provision. It has focussed on six core categories and three main disciplines: domestic provision, importation for domestic markets and, its largest division, export for overseas markets. This export division includes

Valleyfresh New Zealand and Freshmax Exports Limited (formerly Crasborns), which leads Freshmax’s global pipfruit category.
Freshmax Founder and Chairman David Smith says the company’s performance in New Zealand is something to be proud of.

“Freshmax has a longstanding and loyal team with a proven history of delivering value for its customers and suppliers. I would like to thank our staff, suppliers and partners for their support through our journey together over the past 24 years. As a business, we are confident that T&G provides an opportunity to extend our legacy into the future.”

After the deal receives Commerce Commission approval, Freshmax will focus on strengthening its investments in New Zealand that support export growth.

Freshmax Group CEO Murray McCallum says the sale of the New Zealand domestic business will free up the company’s other New Zealand businesses to focus on continued growth in international operations, including the potential for further investment across its core categories and IP.

Both McCallum and Common will support the Freshmax New Zealand domestic team through the transition, before continuing to drive the Freshmax Group’s Australian and international businesses.