Exponent, ICG complete £205m Quorn acquisition


UK firms Exponent Private Equity and Intermediate Capital Group have completed the £205m (€238.3m) acquisition of the meat-free division of British food producer Premier, including the Quorn and Cauldron brands.

The firms are to pay £205m (€238.3m), representing 10.6 times the division’s £19.3m (€22.4m) EBITDA for 2010, on sales of £128.8m (€149.7m). Over £200m (€232.5m) of the proceeds will be used to pay down bank debt, while £4.5m (€5.2m) will go towards costs and pension fund contributions.

Part of a drive by Premier to reduce its non-core holdings, the sale will allow greater focus and management time to be devoted to its grocery and Hovis bread making businesses.

Quorn is a vegetarian food product made of fungi known as mycroprotein, which can be adapted into meat-free versions of mincemeat and chicken pieces, while Cauldron prduces a variety of tofu and vegetarian food products for supermarkets and health food shops.

Chris Graham, founding partner, Exponent, said: “We believe that Quorn Foods, which already has a strong brand and loyal customer base here in the UK, has significant potential to grow its domestic market share as well as expanding internationally. Additional investment in advertising campaigns and innovative product development will help Quorn Foods to achieve its aim of becoming the world’s leading meat-alternative business.”

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