Japanese food giant Ajinomoto has fully acquired Kükre Gıda Inc., the parent company of Turkey's long-established food brand Kemal Kükrer.
Ajinomoto, which already owned a 50 percent stake in the company, signed a new deal to buy the remaining 50 percent for TL 181 million ($51.36 million) on Aug. 17. After the sell, Sabri Gülel, speaking on behalf of the Gülel family, the former owners of Kükre Gıda Inc., said that they were proud of Kükre being part of one of the world's largest food producers.
"It is a matter of great happiness for us to handover this gem to a large global company like Ajinomoto, which has R&D in its genes and discovered the fifth taste umami. We strongly believe that under Ajinomoto the Kemal Kükrer brand will continue to grow."
Founded in 1909, Ajinomoto is Japan's largest food company, with sales network spreading over 130 countries. It operates 118 factories in 30 countries and employs more than 32,734 people.
It has pursued a strong investment policy in Turkey. Earlier in 2017, Ajinomoto took over Örgen Gıda, the parent company of one of Turkey's leading food brands Bizim Mutfak, from Turkish food giant Ülker. Ajinomoto Örgen Gıda CEO Sinan Altun said: "With the recent acquisitions, we have so far invested more than TL 500 million in Turkey. Thanks to Ajinomoto's extensive global network and research and development [R&D] power, we aim to make Turkey an important base within five years."
He added that they were progressing with sure steps, in line with their investment and growth targets in Turkey.
Altun said: "Ajinomoto is one of the world's largest food producers with a 108-year-long history, widespread global network and a strong R&D department consisting of almost 1,700 people. It has big goals in Turkey and has already invested more than TL 500 million."
"With these investments, we have become one of the biggest food product companies in Turkey. We are aiming to reach a much higher position by increasing our capacity," Altun said. He emphasized that Ajinomoto's growth targets here show the importance it attaches to Turkey.
Altun said: "Ajinomoto will continue to invest in Turkey and we will continue to grow with its R&D power, global network, expertise, and investments. To this end, we are working with great enthusiasm and passion. We are confident that we will achieve much greater successes in the near future." "The company aims to turn Turkey into a regional production base within five years and focus on new products. It has already drawn a roadmap to continue growth, with confident steps and efficient investments," he said.