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Groupe Berkem completes acquisition of Biopress

Groupe Berkem completes acquisition of Biopress
Photo courtesy of Groupe Berkem

Groupe Berkem, a leading player in bio-based  chemistry, announced the completion of the acquisition  of Biopress, a French producer of 100% natural vegetable oils and proteins.

The integration of this company into the consolidated accounts of Groupe Berkem was completed on April  1, 2023. The acquisition of Biopress, effected by Berkem Développement, a wholly owned subsidiary of  Groupe Berkem, was fully financed in cash and financed out of equity.

“Raw material sourcing has always been a  real know-how for Groupe Berkem and, faced with an inflationary and geopolitically complex environment,  we felt that it was necessary to internalise this ability through a dedicated subsidiary. With the acquisition  of Biopress, Groupe Berkem now manages its supply of vegetable oils, essential raw materials for its  extraction and formulation activities, while at the same time significantly increasing its storage capacity in  the direct vicinity of its production facilities. Through local and 100% plant-based sourcing, we will  strengthen our Health, Beauty & Nutrition, Industry and Construction & Materials business areas, which  fully benefit from the recognised virtues of so-called technical vegetable oils and plant proteins. Finally, this  acquisition gives us access to a new market, that of agri-food, where we intend to develop new sustainable  solutions for manufacturers looking for naturalness,” said Olivier Fahy, chairman and CEO of Groupe Berkem. 

Located in Tonneins (Lot-et-Garonne), Biopress is one of the first French agri-food companies to specialise  in the production of vegetable oils extracted from organic oil seeds from local farms. With properties  similar to petroleum derivatives, while being renewable and biodegradable resources, vegetable oils can  be used in a wide variety of applications such as cosmetics, coatings, inks, and lubricants. Also, the  vegetable proteins contained in oil cakes, which result from the crushing process that is used to extract  the oil from the seeds, are particularly prized in the nutraceutical field. 

With this acquisition, Groupe Berkem is consolidating its offering in the Health, Beauty & Nutrition area  of expertise and more specifically in the cosmetics market. The transaction is in line  with the acquisition of i.Bioceuticals, a North American distributor of nutritional supplements, which was announced  on 16 February 2023, and paves the way for new opportunities for growth in this booming market.  

Surfactants derived from these vegetable oils are also used in numerous industrial applications, being  particularly prized for their solubilizing, detergent, wetting and emulsifying properties. These products will  therefore find applications in sectors already addressed by the group. Finally, the integration of Biopress  will provide Groupe Berkem with new commercial opportunities in the agri-food market.  

With this acquisition, Groupe Berkem adds to its value chain the sourcing of a raw material essential to its  activity of integrating plant-based chemistry. The group now benefits from a local supply of technical  vegetable oils, as Biopress is geographically close to the group’s plant located in Gardonne, in the  southwest of France. Biopress’ facilities also provide significant new storage space for the Group as it anticipates the future growth of its business. The group can thus expand its production capacity and  ensure the processing of more than 8,000 tons of plants per year.