RICHMOND, Va.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Harris Williams, a global investment bank specializing in M&A advisory services, announces that it is advising Universal Corporation (NYSE: UVV; Universal) on its pending acquisition of Silva International (Silva). Universal sources, processes and supplies agri-products and is the leading global leaf tobacco supplier. The transaction is being led by Tim Alexander, Andy Warczak and Ryan Ghazaeri of the Harris Williams Consumer Group.
“This transaction builds on the momentum of Universal’s expansion into food ingredients, a space that continues to exhibit robust growth,” said Tim Alexander, a managing director at Harris Williams. “We’re excited to have facilitated the partnership between Universal and Silva, which will be a highly strategic combination based on the global sourcing models of both businesses.”
“Universal’s acquisition of Silva is complementary to its recent acquisition of FruitSmart, which was completed earlier this year,” said Andy Warczak, a vice president at Harris Williams. “Universal is building a leading plant-based food ingredients platform that is well positioned for growth given underlying food and beverage trends and increasing consumer preference for clean-label and plant-based alternatives.”
Universal, headquartered in Richmond, Virginia, sources, processes and supplies agri-products. Tobacco has been Universal’s principal focus since its founding in 1918, and the company is the leading global leaf tobacco supplier. The company conducts business in more than 30 countries on five continents. Their revenues for the fiscal year ended March 31, 2020, were $1.9 billion.
Silva has provided dehydrated vegetable, herb and select fruit ingredients to the food industry for more than 40 years. Headquartered outside of Chicago in Momence, Illinois, Silva’s ingredients are produced using state-of-the-art processing equipment and the latest in food-safety and sorting technology.
Harris Williams, an investment bank specializing in M&A advisory services, advocates for sellers and buyers of companies worldwide through critical milestones and provides thoughtful advice during the lives of their businesses. By collaborating as one firm across Industry Groups and geographies, the firm helps its clients achieve outcomes that support their objectives and strategically create value. Harris Williams is committed to execution excellence and to building enduring, valued relationships that are based on mutual trust. Harris Williams is a subsidiary of the PNC Financial Services Group, Inc. (NYSE: PNC).
The Harris Williams Consumer Group has experience across a variety of sectors, including consumer products, consumer services, food, beverage, agribusiness, retail and restaurants. For more information on the firm’s Consumer Group and other recent transactions, visit the Consumer Group section of the Harris Williams website.
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