Management Team Buys out Northumbrian Fine Foods

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The management team at Northumbrian Fine Foods (‘NFF’) has purchased the business with assistance from a number of long term investors, including CriSeren Investments and Food Investment Group.

The transaction will allow the team to further grow the NFF business, invest in recruitment, new facilities and the development of new products.

NFF, which is based at Team Valley in Gateshead, manufactures biscuits and cereal bars and currently employs 150 staff. The company is also a specialist manufacturer of gluten free products under their Prewetts brand.

The management team is led by David Sillars, the managing director, who has been joined by ex-colleagues from Northern Foods, Stewart Housecroft and Kirk Connor. The new Board will be chaired by food industry veteran Peter Macielinski and will also include Bill Hazeldean from the Food Investment Group.

David Sillars at Northumbrian Fine Foods said: “With the management buy-out, we are aiming to increase market share and profitability through the growth of proprietary-branded, retailer-branded and contract manufacturing, supported by strong new product development activity.

Trading in the latter part of 2010 has shown strong growth as a result of our significant product launch programme, involving both retailer brand and licensed products. This has included a new range of Thorntons cookies, the re-launch of the Geobar range for Traidcraft and a licensing deal to produce and sell Jammie Dodger and Maryland cereal bars.”

The management team was advised on the deal by a team at leading commercial law firm Muckle LLP including partner Craig Swinhoe, associate Philip Clare and solicitor Rodica Damian.

Philip Clare said: “It was great working with the management team on this deal and we are delighted to have played a role in supporting them acquire a well-established local business.  We look forward to seeing Northumbrian Fine Foods continue with its exciting growth plans.”

Craig Swinhoe added: “Working with the client, we reacted quickly to an evolving deal to ensure that they met the tight timescales.  The end result is a testament to strength of the management team and the experience and hard work of our team, which also included banking associate Kevin Maloney and property associate Kate Sutton.”

David Sillars continued: “We have a lot of expertise in the food industry, but the deal was unlike anything we have experienced – so we are grateful to everyone in the team at Muckle LLP for their advice and support and we are very impressed with the comprehensive help and service we received from them”.

For further information please contact Craig Swinhoe, call 0191 211 7945 or alternatively email us at [email protected].