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Symrise Chief Considers Bid for Wild Flavors in Deal Pursuit

Symrise AG, the fourth-largest maker of flavors and fragrances, would consider bidding for German rival Wild Flavors GmbH as Chief Executive Officer Heinz-Juergen Bertram pursues deals to accelerate growth.

Bertram today at a press briefing also confirmed his potential interest in ingredients company Diana. An earlier report by the Financial Times said that Symrise bid for Diana.

For an acquisition bigger than 1 billion euros ($1.39 billion), Symrise would sell shares to investors to raise cash, Chief Financial Officer Bernd Hirsch said today at the sidelines of the company’s earnings conference in Frankfurt. About 300 million euros to 400 million euros debt could be used, Hirsch said.

“You can see that we wouldn’t shy away from bigger targets,” Bertram said today. “We always have five to seven potential acquisitions on our list. Some are bigger and some are small to medium-sized.”

Wild Flavors owner Hans-Peter Wild and buyout firm KKR & Co. are exploring strategic options including a sale of the maker of flavorings for food and beverages that could fetch as much as $2 billion, people with knowledge of the matter said in January.

Symrise rose 2.6 percent to 36.48 euros at the close of Frankfurt trading after gaining as much as 3 percent earlier in the day. The stock has risen 8.9 percent this year for a market value of 4.3 billion euros.

The company could raise cash by selling shares in an accelerated bookbuilding process, Hirsch said today.

Symrise boosted its stake in probiotics maker Probi AB to 30.03 percent in January, triggering a mandatory bid for the whole of the Swedish company. The German company didn’t offer a premium on Probi’s share price and the offer closes on March 12.

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