DSM-Firmenich completes nutrition mega-merger: Innovation prospects uncovered live at Vitafoods Europe
09 May 2023 --- DSM and Firmenich have completed their “merger of equals,” creating a robust business platform to “reinvent, manufacture and combine vital nutrients, flavors and fragrances.” The Swiss-Dutch group has a combined revenue of around €12 billion (US$ 13.17 billion).
“The objective is to become future proof and keep innovating and growing,” Emma Peyrachon, EMEA marketing manager at DSM Nutritional Products, tells NutritionInsight live from the Vitafoods Europe trade show.
“We are looking forward to working together to offer innovative solutions to our customers and valorize the products that will make us a unique company.”
“We want to bring progress to life by combining the essential, the desirable and the sustainable.”
The company will continue to enhance its key products like vitamins, minerals, omega 3s and “anything that supports nutrition.”
“Sustainability remains a key value for the company as it was for DSM and Firmenich before the merger,” adds Peyrachon.
Innovation in nutrition
The company notes that by applying science, data-driven capabilities and standards of operations excellence, DSM-Firmenich will address consumer and planetary demands in the nutrition, health and beauty sectors.
“We are now a global-scale partner to the F&B industry through our combined Taste, Texture & Health business unit,” a DSM-Firmenich spokesperson tells us.
“We have a unique blend of renowned science and technology capabilities plus a comprehensive range of solutions with natural and renewable ingredients.”
The company shares examples of new products and prototypes it will work on, such as a probiotic milk drink that supports immunity.
“Bringing our tools and knowledge together, we’ve got the essential nutrients and the ability to create a premium taste and smell that’s desirable for consumers. And we can make sure it’s produced more sustainably for the planet too,” the spokesperson says.
The company indicates that its experts are developing plant-based burgers that look and taste like conventional meat.
DSM-Firmenich endeavors to combine the two organizations in a “merger of equals,” aiming to grow its positive impact on the environment and help tackle climate change.
But for now, it’s “business as usual,” continues Peyrachon. “Our priority is still on our customers – they will be informed little by little about the changes that are coming up.”
As of September 1, 2023, the existing leadership structure will be changed, with co-CEO Dimitri de Vreeze taking over as CEO and Ralf Schmeitz joining the firm as CFO. Current co-CEO Geraldine Matchett will step down.
“With the merger now a reality, we have together determined that the dual leadership that has served DSM so well during a period of significant change is no longer needed for DSM-Firmenich going forward,” comments Thomas Leysen, chairman of DSM-Firmenich.
In related developments, DSM recently explored the acquisition of Adare Biome from its parent company Adare Pharma Solutions to expand its human health and animal nutrition offering.
Last week, the Dutch multinational disclosed a challenging first quarter with declining sales and margins. The company reported 6% lower sales than in Q1 2021 – sales of €1.89 billion (US$2.07 billion). Its F&B business demonstrated resilience, while Health, Nutrition & Care sales decreased by 2%.
The new company is organized into four businesses: Taste, Texture & Health, Health, Nutrition & Care, Animal Nutrition & Health and Perfumery & Beauty.
The Taste, Texture & Health business will help customers create F&B products that are “delicious, nutritious, affordable and sustainable.” The focus is to provide enjoyment, nourishment and business success for DSM-Firmenich’s clients and better health for people and the planet.
The Health, Nutrition & Care division aims to drive medical innovation forward, speed up recovery and enhance the quality of life by adding critical nutrients to people’s diets.
In Animal Nutrition & Health, the company will deliver animal proteins efficiently and sustainably, using data to make animal farming practices more sustainable, productive and transparent.
Finally, in Perfumery & Beauty, the company will create scents with proven benefits from an extensive palette of ingredients.
Firmenich completed its contribution of shares to DSM-Firmenich, making it a wholly-owned subsidiary of the company. Firmenich contributed € 3.5 billion (US$ 3.84 billion) and 34.5% of DSM-Firmenich shares, over 91.6 million.
DSM-Firmenich is listed on the Euronext Amsterdam stock exchange.
By Jolanda van Hal, with live reporting from William Bradford Nichols at Vitafoods Europe
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