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Nestlé sells North American water operations

US$4.3-billion deal includes Canadian Pure Life brand, Poland Spring, Deer Park and Ozarka Brands

Swiss food and beverage giant Nestlé has continued the strategic transformation of its water business with the sale of Nestlé Waters North America to One Rock Capital Partners in partnership with Metropoulos and Co.

The US$4.3-billion sale, which was announced early Wednesday in Switzerland, includes the Canadian Pure Life brand, Poland Spring, Deer Park and Ozarka Brands.

The company's international premium brands such as Perrier, S. Pellegrino and Acqua Panna are not included in the sale.

One Rock Capital Partners is a private equity firm with headquarters in New York City. Metropoulos and Co. is a Connecticut-based investment firm specializing in reviving food and beverage brands.

Last year, Nestlé tried to sell its Canadian Pure Life brand to Canadian water bottling company Ice River Springs, but the deal did not meet the requirements of the Competition Bureau.

At the same time, a group of water advocates in the area called on Nestlé to return local wells to their municipalities rather than include them in a sale of the company's North American properties. The advocates, known as the Wellington Water Watchers, said the Aberfoyle well should be given to the Six Nations of the Grand River, a water insecure community that claims ownership as part of the Haldimand Proclamation and the 1701 Nanfan Treaty.

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