EDMONTON, ALBERTA - November 7, 2007: Natraceutical Group, a biotech multinational holding company based in Europe, has agreed to purchase the assets and operations of Cevena Bioproducts Inc. Recognizing that Viscofiber® is the only high-viscosity and high-concentration oat beta-glucan soluble fiber commercially available, Natraceutical has moved to further consolidate its functional food business with the acquisition of Viscofiber® (). All Viscofiber® products will now be manufactured and distributed by Natraceutical Canada Inc. (a wholly owned subsidiary of Natraceutical Group) and sold worldwide by the Natraceutical Group of companies. The team that manufactured and marketed Viscofiber® at Cevena will remain in place at Natraceutical Canada.
Beta-glucan is a natural grain-based soluble fiber mainly from oat and barley. The viscosity of beta-glucan is believed to be extremely important for its physiological efficacy. Today Viscofiber® is the only viscous and high concentration beta-glucan commercially available in a multi-functional ingredient. Dietary fiber is collectively acknowledged to be one of the key factors in a health promoting diet as the link between intake of dietary fiber and the reduced risk of many diseases is established in several studies. No longer is fiber considered solely beneficial for digestion. With an enhanced concentration of soluble fiber - up to 12 times more than oat bran - Viscofiber® offers a new solution for heart healthy consumers. In fact, Viscofiber® delivers a multitude of health benefits, including improved cholesterol, improved glycemic response, glucose management and increased satiety for weight loss formulations.
"The need to incorporate fiber into our diets has never been higher," said Mr. Jose Vicente Pons Andreu, CEO of Natraceutical Group. "Food manufacturers are scrambling to respond consumer demand for healthier, minimally processed food products. Viscofiber®'s high concentration and superior viscosity is ideal for dietary supplement manufacturers, while its great flexibility in product formulations is appropriate for functional food products. The ingredient can be incorporated into such products as breads, drinks, nutritional bars, yogurts, ice cream, soups, pasta and breakfast cereals. Viscofiber® also offers great potential for introduction in the beauty and pet food sectors". After the launch of soluble cocoa fiber last year, the purchase of Viscofiber® is a further step for Natraceutical Group to lead the global functional food sector by developing and manufacturing healthy ingredients and services to help their customers to achieve optimal performance in the market-place. Cevena wishes to thank the following organizations for their support: Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Agriculture & Food Council, Alberta Agriculture, Food and Rural Development, Alberta Barley Commission, Alberta Crop Industry Development Fund, Alberta Heritage Foundation for Medical Research, Alberta Ingenuity, AVAC Ltd, BDC Venture Capital, Food Beverage Canada, Foragen Technologies Limited Partnership, Golden Opportunities Fund Inc. and the National Research Council of Canada.
About Natraceutical Canada and Natraceutical Group
Natraceutical Canada Inc., based in Edmonton, Canada, is a wholly owned subsidiary of Natraceutical Group. Natraceutical Group is a biotechnology holding company based in Spain, with a worldwide presence. The company is traded in the Spanish Stock Exchange and it is a leading European company in research and development of functional food, active ingredients and nutritional supplements derived from natural sources. The Group operates production sites in Spain, the United Kingdom, Switzerland, Australia and Brazil. The Group's functional and nutritional ingredients division has a portfolio of over 500 products; the company caters to the food, cosmetics and pharmaceutical industries, and its sales network is present in over 60 countries, with offices in Russia and Asia. Natraceutical's clients total more than 1,000 companies, including eight of the world's top ten food companies. The consistently strong performance of the Group's R&D department has enabled Natraceutical to diversify its business in the production of functional and active ingredients for food, cosmetics and pharmacy.
Vice President Marketing and Sales
Natraceutical Canada Inc.
Tel: +1 (780) 438 2812
Porter Novelli Espana
Tel. (+34) 96 394 39 42
Tel. (+34) 93 584 81 85
Natraceutical is traded in the Spanish Stock Exchange under the ticker NTC.
Shares outstanding: 328.713.946