November 2009: SOCIOS advises Nederland Group, the leading Spanish cocoa manufacturer, in the sale of its subsidiary Chocovic to Barry Callebaut. The current owners of Nederland Group will retain ownership of the other activities of the company, which include Moner and Nederland (cocoa processing).

Chocovic specializes in chocolate and specialty products for industrial and artisanal customers whilst Barry Callebaut is the world’s leading manufacturer of high-quality cocoa and chocolate products. Founded in 1872, Chocovit has a state-of-the-art factory in Gurb and produces 31,000 tonnes of chocolate and specialty products per year. It has annual sales of approx. EUR 60 million (2008) and employs 120 people. Chocovic also owns “Aula Chocovic”, a chocolate academy which offers training for professionals and gives technical support to Chocovic’s commercial team and subsidiaries in Italy and France.

The transaction is subject to the approval of the competition authorities and it is expected to close by the end of the calendar year.

SOCIOS advises Nederland Group in the negotiation and closing of the transaction.