Dairy products producer Lifeway Foods (NASDAQ: LWAY ) is bulking up.
On Wednesday, the Morton Grove, Ill.-based manufacturer of kefir dairy drinks announced that it will acquire the Golden Guernsey dairy plant in Waukesha, Wis., for $7.4 million. The plant had been shuttered in January following Golden's bankruptcy filing. But now that Lifeway has bought it, the company says it will reopen the 170,000 square-foot facility and rehire at least some of the workers laid off following the bankruptcy.
Lifeway expects to close the purchase transaction on June 10, quadrupling its production capacity in one fell swoop, and making it easier for the company to keep up with explosive growth in the probiotics and health-food markets.
Analysts project that Lifeway's sales will expand by roughly 37.5% through 2014, in comparison with 2012 levels, with per-share profits rising as much as 56% over the same period.
Lifeway shares were up 2.4% on today's news, closing at $13.45.