Sunday 16 June 2024
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Mercon sells Mercon Specialty to StoneX and Mercafe Vietnam to Swiss-based coffee giant Sucafina

StoneX announced the formation of StoneX Specialty Coffee, which will retain key management team from Mercon Specialty, as well as some contracts, inventory, equipment and intellectual property. Sucafina will acquire Mercon’s unit in Vietnam through its local subsidiary

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MILAN – Big Changes are brewing in the global coffee market, following the bankruptcy of Dutch-based Mercon Coffee Group, one of the world’s largest green coffee traders. Mercon Coffee Group has filed for bankruptcy protection in the U.S. in December last year, due to what it defined as “exceptionally challenging operating environment,” according to a document quoted by Reuters.

Mercon, which has operations in all the major producing regions including Brazil, Vietnam and Central America, said in a letter sent to clients that problems in recent years such as the logistical disruption during the pandemic, frost and drought in Brazil, price volatility, and rising interest rates all combined to hurt the company’s financial situation.

The bankruptcy filing lets Mercon keep operating while it pursues an “orderly sale of its assets.” The company has listed possessions worth a total of $359 million.

Two major global competitors have entered the scene in recent days by announcing the acquisition of two important assets of the Dutch group: US financial giant StoneX and Swiss coffee company Sucafina.

StoneX has announced the acquisition of Mercon Specialty, a Seattle-based US subsidiary of Dutch Mercon Coffee Group, for USD 5.4 million, according to court documents filed at the end of last month.

At the same time, StoneX announced the formation of StoneX Specialty Coffee, which will retain key management team from Mercon Specialty, as well as some contracts, inventory, equipment and intellectual property.

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“Mercon Specialty has now transitioned to StoneX Specialty Coffee, a division of StoneX Commodity Solutions. This means we are back, stronger than ever to serve your needs in the specialty coffee industry” wrote the company in a post on LinkedIn.

“As a subsidiary of StoneX Group Inc., StoneX Specialty Coffee is backed with extensive knowledge in farming, production, trading, logistics, and risk management” the company also wrote in a new dedicated website.

“StoneX Specialty Coffee has decades of experience in the green coffee sector, giving us access to a multitude of countries and qualities for our roaster clients.”

Meanwhile, it has been reported that Swiss trader Sucafina will acquire Mercafe Vietnam Ltd, Mercon’s unit in Vietnam. The acquisition is being carried out by Sucafina’s local subsidiary, according to court filings.

Financial terms of the deal, which was confirmed by Sucafina, were not disclosed.

The acquisition, which is not yet finalised, would allow Sucafina to expand its presence in Vietnam, the world’s largest producer of Robusta coffee.

The Swiss giant has made a number of acquisitions in recent years, including the US coffee importer Sustainable Harvest, and purchased a majority stake in UK-based merchant Complete Coffee Ltd. It has also opened sales offices in China, India, Indonesia and New Zealand and launched a new Guatemalan subsidiary.

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