• Kyodo

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Ajinomoto Co. said Wednesday it will acquire U.S. frozen food maker Windsor Quality Holdings LP for about $800 million (about ¥84 billion) in a bid to increase its presence in the vast North American market.

A U.S. subsidiary of Ajinomoto, known widely as the producer of the MSG seasoning, will acquire all shares in Windsor in early November.

Windsor holds a leading share in the U.S. market for Asian frozen foods. Ajinomoto aims to capitalize on the Texas-based company’s seven production bases and the roughly 80,000 stores in the United States that carry its products to boost sales of its own products.

“There’s heightened interest in healthy Japanese and Asian cuisine in North America,” said Ajinomoto President Masatoshi Ito at a press conference in Tokyo. “We’re aiming to become the overwhelming No. 1 in frozen foods in this field.”

Ajinomoto hopes to increase frozen food sales in North America from $130 million (¥13.5 billion) forecast for the current fiscal year ending next March to around ¥100 billion by fiscal 2020.

Windsor logged roughly $670 million in consolidated sales in 2013 excluding its sausage business, which will be spun off before the acquisition.

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