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Merger will see Christchurch company expand its global range

Christchurch-based exporter Garra International will merge with global trading company KIT International creating a joint venture, with a combined turnover in excess of NZ$350 million taking New Zealand and international primary produce to the world.

Garra founder Ali Mossalem said today that combining their resources and product ranges will strengthen both companies as they have complementary markets, products and customers.

“For example,” Mossalem said, “Garra does not trade in chicken meat, but KIT does. So, for our established customers in the Middle East, the ability to add chicken to our range is likely to grow our market share in that region. Similarly, Garra’s access to some of the best red meats and other primary produce that New Zealand and Australia have to offer will augment KIT’s product range.”

Mossalem founded Garra in Christchurch 25 years ago. It specialises in marketing and exporting high quality red meat, offal, dairy, vegetables and seafood – sourced from trusted suppliers throughout the world – to markets in the Middle East, North Africa, Asia and North America.

KIT International was founded in the United States in 2011 and sells around 65,000 tonnes of primary produce annually throughout the world. The company promotes its trading role as an important link between the animal protein production sector and the international consumer market.

The joint venture will combine 85 current staff and necessitate new hires in Christchurch and other global offices.

Ali Mossalem will remain as CEO of Garra and as a Director on the Garra Board, while Michael Ambrose continues as Chairman. Garra Director Jonathan Freeman takes on the additional role of Commercial Executive Director, whilst Frederico Kaefer and Andre Skirmunt join the board from KIT. Kerry McBreen will continue in her role as General Manager.

KIT director and chief executive Frederico Kaefer said, “Our merger combines all of the physical and intellectual resources of two highly innovative and entrepreneurial companies. Together we can take a leadership role in the international trade of primary produce, especially sourced and packaged to the highest standards for a discerning customer base.”

KIT, prior to the merger, had no presence in New Zealand. The merged companies will have offices in New Zealand, Brazil, Paraguay, Egypt, Jordan, United Arab Emirates, United States of America and Australia.


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