With Court Approval, U.S. Sugar Announced Plans To Close On Imperial Sugar, Including The Savannah Refinery

Joining two unique companies into a truly great American sugar business

Published online: Sep 28, 2022 News
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Clewiston, Fla. -- With the Friday court ruling rejecting the Department of Justice's attempt to prevent U.S. Sugar from acquiring Imperial Sugar, U.S. Sugar announced its plans to move forward as quickly as possible to consummate the transaction, complete the acquisition and bring the Imperial Sugar Company back into American family ownership.

"The people of U.S. Sugar are pleased that the court's favorable ruling will allow our acquisition of Imperial Sugar, including the Savannah Refinery, to go forward," Robert H. Buker, Jr., U.S. Sugar's President and CEO, said. "As an employee and charity-owned company, this acquisition will be good for our current and future employees. We look forward to proceeding as planned with this acquisition, which will enable us to increase our domestic sugar production, enhance the local Georgia economy, decrease U.S. reliance on foreign imports of sugar, and benefit farmers, customers and consumers across the country."

Savannah area business leaders, residents and others have positively reacted to the news that U.S. Sugar is moving forward with the acquisition. "The Savannah Refinery and our city have long been intertwined and we look forward to U.S. Sugar officially becoming a part of our community," Bill Hubbard, President and CEO of the Savannah Area Chamber of Commerce explained. "We know that U.S. Sugar has a reputation for being a good corporate citizen, treating its employees well, and giving back to the communities it serves."

"By combining our collective strengths, talents and locations—we now become a truly great American sugar company that will better serve all our people, our communities, and our customers throughout the country," Buker explained. 

Buker added that U.S. Sugar intends to invest in upgrading Imperial's Savannah Refinery and operations, and plans to retain the current hard-working employees in that facility.

"We are excited about the opportunity to re-establish strong ties with both the people of Imperial and the community of Savannah," Buker added. Prior to building its Clewiston Refinery in 1998, U.S. Sugar for decades sold and shipped its raw cane sugar to the Savannah refinery it is now acquiring. 

The company sustainably farms more than 230,000 acres of sugarcane in South Florida and also owns and operates a short-line railroad, the South Central Florida Express, that facilitates shipping sugar products.

A federal court in Delaware [UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE DISTRICT OF DELAWARE C.A. No. 21-1644 (MN)] ruled against the Department of Justice in its challenge of the U.S. Sugar acquisition of Imperial Sugar. In an opinion, which will be made public soon, the court rejected the Department of Justice's claim that the transaction would substantially lessen competition and found that the government's theories did not comport with the commercial realities of the sugar industry. At trial, the chief economist for the United States Department of Agriculture testified that she believes that this acquisition will have an overall positive impact on the sugar industry in this country, and in particular, that may lead to lower domestic sugar prices.

For more information, visit www.ussugar.com or www.imperialsugar.com.