Nutrien Ltd. to purchase ag lab group Waypoint Analytical

LOVELAND — Nutrien Ltd. (NYSE: NTR), one of the largest crop-nutrient companies in the world, is about to get bigger. The Canada-based company, which maintains a U.S. office in Loveland, has signed a definitive agreement to acquire Waypoint Analytical Inc., based in Memphis, Tenn.,  along with its operating subsidiaries.

Waypoint is the largest agriculture laboratory group in the United States and employs about 250 people at 11 U.S. laboratories and six service centers that analyze approximately 1.8 million soil samples for the agricultural market on an annual basis.

“Waypoint is the leading U.S. provider of integrated agricultural sampling, testing and analytics that generate valuable insights into sustainable soil health and plant fertility for its customers,” Mike Frank, president of Nutrien Ag Solutions, said in a prepared statement. “Nutrien has been a significant customer of Waypoint for many years — and this acquisition will further strengthen our partnership.”

Frank said “the combination of Waypoint’s capabilities with Nutrien Ag Solutions’ new, integrated digital platform will significantly enhance and accelerate our ability to provide integrated science-based insights, services and unique digital product offerings that will support optimal fertility advice for our customers globally.”

Nutrien initially will acquire 80 percent of Waypoint, with the remaining 20 percent to be acquired by Nutrien after five years.

“Nutrien has been a strong and long-standing customer of Waypoint, and this transaction will build a new foundation for Waypoint to accelerate our strong track record of providing value-enhancing solutions and support for all of our customers,” said Scott McKee, president & CEO of Waypoint. “Additionally, this partnership will enhance Waypoint’s ability to invest in new capabilities and continue to grow our business both in the U.S. and in international markets, where Nutrien has a sizeable and growing retail presence. We believe that this transaction is a very positive outcome for our company that will benefit all of our employees and customers going forward.”

Nutrien was created in January through the $36 billion merger of Agrium Inc. and Potash Corp. The company also operates a research-and-development facility in Greeley.