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TIN news:           Bunge Ltd., one of the largest global agricultural processors and traders, is considering the addition of a third port in Australia and is looking for ways to expand in Western Canada.
The U.S. company may add another port in either southern or eastern Australia and look at partnerships or new construction to access crop exports from the west coast of Canada, Chief Executive Officer Soren Schroder said.
“We are very, very close to having completed the global footprint,” he said Thursday in an interview. “Canada and Australia were the last two pieces.”
Since taking the helm at Bunge in June 2013, Schroder has been looking at where it should focus to improve returns. The company began a strategic review of its Brazilian sugar assets later that year. Bunge said earlier this month it’s scaling back its asset-management business.
“We have identified the pieces that we needed to act on,” he said. “The rest of it, the core of Bunge agri-food, is strong and thriving and we want to grow.”
White Plains, New York-based Bunge has already made a move in Canada. On April 15 it agreed with a state-owned Saudi company to jointly buy a controlling stake in the former Canadian Wheat Board, a grain exporter.
Bunge recently saw the first vessel depart from its new Bunbury port in Australia and is constructing a terminal at its other port in the country, in Geelong. Bunge prefers to convert existing facilities or build new ones in Australia rather than make acquisitions, Schroder said.
The CEO also said Bunge is still looking for ways to reduce its involvement in sugar and bioenergy in Brazil at the “right moment and right price.” He declined to comment on the timing of a decision on the assets.
The company reported first-quarter earnings, excluding one-time items, of $1.58 a share, beating the $1.14 average of analysts’ estimates compiled by Bloomberg.

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