LENT, Netherlands: Plant World says the deals strenghten the company in the global marketplace.
Dutch-based plant nursery Plant World has snapped up both Smit Kwekerijen and the genetics and plant variety rights of leaf Begonia grower Antoon Hoefnagels in an acquisition spree designed to bolster the company’s position in the international houseplant trade.
The acquisition of Hoefnagels’ genetics and Smit Kwekerijen is Plant World’s third and fourth investment respectively in ornamental horticulture following the acquistion of Van der Arend Tropical Plant Center and JoGrow, a third generation grower of tropical foliage plants, and a range of garden Hydrangeas.
Husband and wife team Antoon and Ans Hoefnagels founded plant production, breeding and propagation company Hoefnagels in 1984. By doing so the couple plunged into a plant category that was not saturated and rare.
Today, they operate from a 8,800m2 site in Lent, near Nijmegen and increased business recognition in the market by growing Magic Colours and Botanica, two unique series featuring fancy coloured and specimen Begonias with bullated leaves and ruffled leaves
Antoon Hoefnagels, founder and owner of plant nursery Hoefnagels says, “We are very pleased to become part of the Plant World family. We have focused since 1984 on being a trusted and reliable partner to the buyers of our beloved leaf begonias. We are confident this will continue under Plant World’s ownership, which will offer new growth opportunities for Magic Colours.”
Antoon Hoefnagels, a walking encyclopedia of leaf begonias, will continue to offer guidance to ensure a smooth transition of the Magic Colours varieties in Plant World’s growing product portfolio.
Smit Kwekerijen in Sappemeer (near Groningen) is a 18ha modern houseplant nursery growing a wide range of tropical foliage plants such as Alocasia, leaf Begonia, Crassula, Fittonia, Peperomia, Pilea, and Tradescantia for wholesale customers across Europe. Obed Smit founded the company in 1985 when he purchased a small-scaled nursery from his uncle. Initially Smit grew predominantly bedding plants but swopped these in the 1990s to become a fully fledged houseplant nursery.
Obed Smit is a commercial grower and passionate plantsman, travelling the world to hunt for the most extraordinary plants and tame them in a pot once back home.
Plant World grows a range of PBR-protected (sub) tropical plants, hardy Trachycarpus palm trees and Hydrangeas. The company operates from sites in the Netherlands and abroad. Last year, Synergia Capital Partners, a Netherlands-based private equity firm catalysed the growth of the business by acquiring an undisclosed minority stake in Plant World. Synergia Capital Partners has also stakes in gladiola grower’s alliance For Ever Gladiolen and horticultural engineering company Viscon Group.