General Mills to Acquire Company Growing in Richmond

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The Richmond facility will be operated by the company's Heartland Pet Food subsidiary. (rendering courtesy Blue Buffalo) The Richmond facility will be operated by the company's Heartland Pet Food subsidiary. (rendering courtesy Blue Buffalo)

Minnesota-based General Mills Inc. (NYSE: GIS) has announced plans to acquire a Connecticut-based company with a major presence in Indiana. The $8 billion deal for Blue Buffalo Pet Products Inc. (Nasdaq: BUFF) includes the company's new facility in Richmond, which is under construction.

Blue Buffalo announced in 2016 plans to invest $100 million to construct the 400,000-square-foot production and distribution facility and create up to 165 jobs. Company officials told the Palladium-Item last week that production of certain lines is expected to begin by the middle of this year.

It is not known if the proposed acquisition by General Mills will have any affect on the Richmond facility. In a news release Friday, Blue Buffalo Chief Executive Officer Billy Bishop said General Mills will be a "tremendous home" for the company and its more than 1,700 employees.

"This transaction creates significant, immediate value for our shareholders, as it recognizes the strength of our competitively advantaged business model," said Bishop. "Along with our leadership team, we look forward to working with General Mills to continue growing the BLUE brand for many years to come."

The boards of directors for both companies have approved the acquisition, which remains subject to regulatory approvals and closing conditions. General Mills expects the deal to close by the end of its fiscal year.

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