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Fonterra cleared to acquire the branded butter

9 November 2005

Fonterra cleared to acquire the branded butter and spreads business of NZDF

The Commerce Commission has cleared Fonterra Co-operative Group Limited to acquire from New Zealand Dairy Foods Limited (Rank Group
the 'Anchor', 'Fernleaf' and 'Country Soft' brands and associated business.

Commission Chair Paula Rebstock said that the Commission was satisfied that the proposed acquisition would not have, or would not be likely to have, the effect of substantially lessening competition in the national markets for:

- the wholesale supply and distribution of consumer butter; and
- the wholesale supply and distribution of consumer yellow spreads (excluding butter).

Fonterra is a vertically integrated dairy products manufacturer and marketer, operating in all dairy products markets in New Zealand and numerous other countries. It operates through two main business divisions: Ingredients and Consumer Dairy Products.

Rank Group is a private equity investor based in Auckland. It has two operating subsidiaries: Burns Philp & Company Limited based in Australia and NZDF. Burns Philp wholly owns Goodman Fielder, which operates in various food markets in New Zealand, including the retail yellow spreads (excluding butter) market.

A public version of the written decision will shortly be available on the Commission's website, www.comcom.govt.nz under Public Registers.

ENDS

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