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DSS Group Inc to be acquired for $1.25 Billion by Cott Corporation

Date:07-11-2014

Cott Corporation, the Canadian soft-drink maker has agreed to buy DSS Group Inc for $1.25 billion. DSS Group Inc is the parent company of DS Services of America. DSS Group is the direct-to-consumer provider of water filtration services, bottled water and office coffee in the United States.

DS Services has around 1.5 million customers through a network of over 210 distribution and sales facilities and over 2,100 routes.

The Cott Corporation is a major producer of private label energy drinks, soft drinks, juices and sparkling water. Cott makes sodas for Publix, Sam’s Club and other retailers, and has a concentrate plant and a research and development facility in Columbus.

This acquisition value the assumption of debt and the issuance of preferred shares to Crestview Partners, a private equity firm as well as other selling shareholders.

The acquisition of DSS Group Inc will allow Cott to get into coffee and water office and home delivery services, retail services and water filtration services.

Chief executive of Cott, Jerry Fowden said that the DSS acquisition substantially accelerates their diversification strategy, bringing a strong office and home coffee and water beverage platform and direct-to-customer delivery network into their portfolio. He added that following this acquisition, Cott will have a more balanced earnings and revenue base, a more growth oriented and higher margin business.

Jeff Marcus the Chairman of DSS Group believes that this transaction will enable DSS to accelerate its growth initiatives and will firmly establish Cott as a leader in the beverage space.

Atlanta-based DSS Group will operate as Cott’s subsidiary and will continue to be led by its president and chief executive, Tom Harrington.

DSS Group was advised by Barclays and legal advised was given by Paul, Weiss, Rifkind and Wharton & Garrison while Cott was advised by Credit Suisse and legal advised was given by Drinker Biddle & Reath.

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