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Lakeland and LacPatrick are neighbouring co-operatives, each operating on a cross border basis. The merger of the two societies makes Lakeland Dairies Co-Operative Society Limited the second-biggest milk processor on the island of Ireland, combining a supplier base of more than 3,200 farmers producing a milk pool of more than 1.8bn litres annually.
Cleaver Fulton Rankin’s team led by Director, Hilary Griffith, commented on the merger, “We are delighted to have been involved in this landmark merger on behalf of our client, Lakeland Dairies. It is a clear example of an agri-food company which takes a strategic and ambitious approach to its growth. It is not only an important merger for our client, but also the Northern Ireland dairy farming and agri-food market as a whole. Cleaver Fulton Rankin’s involvement in this merger is testament to the quality and expertise of the firm’s solicitors, who have been involved in many noteworthy acquisitions.”
Michael Hanley, who is the current CEO of Lakeland Dairies, and will continue to serve as the Group CEO commented, “Lakeland Dairies already markets and distributes 240 different dairy products in over 80 countries worldwide. By combining co-operatives and operations with LacPatrick Dairies, Lakeland will continue our strong progress and development as an internationally recognised supplier of superb dairy ingredients and foodservice products. As well as this, the merger gives our farmers the necessary security to make long-term business decisions and provides stability for continuing progress in dairy farming for the next generation.”