Nestle to buy vitamin maker Atrium Innovations for $2.3 bln

Nestle is paying $2.3 billion to buy Canadian vitamin maker Atrium Innovations, it said on Tuesday, expanding its presence in the consumer healthcare market as it seeks to offset weakness in its traditional packaged foods.

The world's largest packaged food company is buying Atrium, which is expected to have 2017 sales of $700 million, from a group of investors led by Permira Funds.

Atrium's largest brand is Garden of Life supplements.

Nestle said the purchase will extend its portfolio with probiotics, plant-based protein nutrition, meal replacements and multivitamins.

This is Nestle's fourth purchase in as many months. It announced deals for Sweet Earth vegetarian foods and Blue Bottle coffee in September and Chameleon Cold-Brew coffee in November.

The purchase is expected to close in the first quarter of 2018.

(Reporting by Martinne Geller; Editing by Edmund Blair and Susan Fenton)

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