Kent-based Jestic Foodservice Equipment has been acquired by South Africa business Universal Industries International.

Described as one of South Africa’s leading kitchen equipment suppliers, Universal Industries has several foodservice businesses, including distributors and manufacturers.

Based in Paddock Wood, Jestic supplies equipment from brands including Josper, Wood Stone, Sveba Dahlen, Edge, Alfa Pro, Somerset and Vitamix.

“Universal Industries and Jestic Foodservice Equipment have many synergies in common, not least the fact that each are leaders within their field in their respective territories,” said new Jestic chairman Wayne Brett.

“The Jestic portfolio of brands and customers is extremely impressive and I look forward to getting to know each and every one in the coming months.”

Jestic founder and former managing director Martin Beesley has retired, but will continue in his current role as non-executive director of strategic development to provide ongoing support to the management team and shareholders.

Former Jestic general manager Ben Dale has been appointed managing director, and said it would be “business as usual” for the company.

“It is extremely important to stress that the existing management team and board of directors –including Steve Morris, Michael Eyre, Neill Pearson and myself – will be continuing with the business,” he explained.

“Universal has shared with all the directors their vision for growth and I am delighted Jestic will provide the perfect platform from which to do this.”