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Dairy Companies announce joint venture

MEDIA RELEASE

16 May 2005

Dairy Companies announce joint venture

Fonterra Co-operative Group has concluded an agreement with South African dairy company Clover Industries Ltd which will see the two companies together explore dairy ingredients-related opportunities in sub-Saharan Africa.

The agreement, approved on May 13 by South Africa’s Competition Tribunal, allows the formation of a joint venture company, Clover Fonterra Ingredients (CFI), to handle the marketing of bulk dairy ingredients, carry out contract ingredient manufacturing, and supply food service products to nominated quick-service restaurants throughout the sub-Saharan region.

The new Company will be headed by Clover executive Pieter Uys. Mr Uys will report to a board of directors, made up of Fonterra and Clover executives. The new Company will employ all existing Clover and Fonterra staff directly involved in the businesses being joined to create CFI.

Fonterra (South Africa) General Manager Malcolm Tweed said CFI will deliver customers a broader product range with greater security of supply and an enhanced product development capability. The integration of Fonterra and Clover’s manufacturing and supply chain processes will play a big part in achieving this.

Joint ventures and similar business partnerships were an important part of Clover’s overall strategy, said Clover CEO Robert Wesseloo. Combining the complementary strengths of Fonterra’s international supply base and Clover’s strong regional platform would benefit the shareholders of both companies.

About Clover

South Africa's largest dairy company and one of the leading manufacturers and marketers of food products in Southern Africa, Clover is well-known for its quality branded products. Clover processes some 30% of South Africa's milk, predominantly for the retail market. The company also trades in commodities such as bulk-packed milk powder and butter. The Clover Group is owned by about 800 supplier shareholders and employs more than 6,000 staff. It last year posted annual revenues of R3.8 billion.

-Ends-

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