Markel Buys Vanderpol & Den Boer, Grows in Bakery Sector


Markel Ventures Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Markel Corporation (MKL) announced the buyout of Vanderpol (Tromp-Pol Baking Equipment B.V.) and Den Boer (Den Boer Baking Systems B.V.). The acquisition was made by AMF/Tromp B.V., a subsidiary of Markel Ventures.

Netherlands based Vanderpol and Den Boer deal in designing and manufacturing of waffle equipment, handling equipment and ovens. This acquisition marks the third one in 2014, following that of Alterra and Abbey Protection.

Post-acquisition, Vanderpol and Den Boer, and Tromp Bakery Equipment (acquired earlier; will be part of Tromp Group, a member of the Markel Bakery Group family of companies. The Tromp Group was formed after AMF Bakery Systems – a subsidiary of Markel Ventures – acquired Tromp Bakery Equipment B.V. and affiliated entities (Tromp), a global supplier of baking equipment.  This resulted in the company’s expansion in the specialty bakery sector.

Presently, Markel Ventures has emerged as a global enterprise with AMF, Reading and Tromp Group, containing the entire gamut of baking equipment. Its offices are located in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, Mexico, the United Arab Emirates, Singapore and China.

Management at Markel Bakery Group remains enthusiastic about this strategic alliance and expects this transaction to result in better customer service in the long run.

To enhance the long-term financial performance of Markel Corporation, Markel Ventures engages in strategic investments in businesses beyond specialty insurance. In this respect, acquisition of a majority interest in Cottrell, Inc. in July marks its latest endeavor. Cottrell is a global leader in the design, manufacture and delivery of over-the-road automobile transport equipment.

Currently, Markel Corp. holds Zacks Rank #5 (Strong Sell). With optimism over the company’s inorganic story we expect the analysts to raise their estimates exerting upward pressure on the Zacks Rank.

Meanwhile, better-ranked property and casualty insurers worth reckoning include AmTrust Financial Services, Inc. (AFSI), Endurance Specialty Holdings Ltd. (ENH) and Global Indemnity plc (GBLI). All of these sport a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy).

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