Sargents approved as buyer for Boparan Xmas pud business

26 October, 2012

Sargents Bakeries is to buy Boparan Holdings' Avana Christmas pudding business, following approval from the Office of Fair Trading (OFT).

The government department said it had accepted Boporan Holdings' offer to sell one of its Christmas pudding businesses, following concerns were raised over loss of competition in the market.

In January this year, the OFT confirmed it would be investigating the completed acquisition of Premier Foods’ Brookes Avana business on the grounds of competition in the wholesale supply of chilled foods and puddings.

The business had been acquired by Solway Foods Ltd - part of 2 Sisters Food Group, owned by Ranjit Boparan.

Last year Boparan Holdings also acquired the Christmas pudding company Matthew Walker, when it purchased rival Northern Foods in a £341m deal in January 2011.

The food conglomerate had offered to sell either its Avana production site in Newport or the Matthew Walker facility in Heanor in Derbyshire, to “a suitable upfront buyer approved by the OFT”.

Yesterday it was announced that following the acceptance of the proposed sale, the merger will not be referred to the Competition Commission.

Doncaster-based Sargents Bakeries manufactures tarts, pies and mince pies.






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