Pilgrim's Pride Corp. announced Tuesday a deal to buy GNP Company, a branded-chicken products provider for the upper midwest, for $350 million in cash. The deal, which is expected to close in the first quarter of 2017, is expected to add to earnings per share in 2017 and to achieve about $20 million a year in synergies. Pilgrim's said it believes GNP's use of innovative technologies, such as gas stunning, aeroscalding and automated deboning, will enhance production efficiencies by increasing the rate of adoption of new technologies in its existing facilities. "GNP Company boasts outstanding state-of-the-art assets in geographic areas where Pilgrim's is not currently present, providing Pilgrim's the opportunity to expand our production and customer bases, while maintaining our high standards for quality service and great-tasting products," said Pilgrim's Chief Executive Bill Lovette. The stock, which was still inactive in premarket trade, has tumbled 19% year to date, while the S&P 500 has gained 7.7%.
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