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Origin firms in 'milestone' merger

AGRI business

ORIGIN Enterprises' grip on the UK agronomy sector tightened yesterday after the Irish company formally merged its Masstock UK and United Agri Products (UAP) businesses.

The merger, which is being rolled out over the next month, sees both brands come under the new brand name of Agrii.

The change comes some 10 months after Origin bought UAP and is hoped to simplify Origin's agronomy business in Britain.

With some 25,000 customers, Agrii will be a market leader in agronomy services to farmers there, and it will employ about 800 people.

The integration may also lead to a streamlining of operations, and create synergies in administration and marketing.

Origin chief executive Tom O'Mahony said the decision to merge the two brands was a "key milestone".

Masstock has become one of Origin's best-known businesses since the Irish company bought it in 2008. The Masstock name will continue outside the UK.

Bloxham said the change would help in "leveraging its growing scale to extract better terms and improved margins from agri-chemical suppliers". Origin closed flat at €3.15.

Irish Independent