Finsbury Food Group’s £37.5m takeover of celebration cake company the Lightbody Group has been agreed by the Finsbury board and shareholders at an extraordinary general meeting.

As reported in British Baker (see 2 February, pg 4), Finsbury claims the deal will make it the leading player in the UK’s celebration cakes market.

Paul Monk was appointed joint deputy chairman (joining David Marshall) at the meeting, while Martin Lightbody and Crawford Currie joined the board.

Lightbody was named strategic development director while Currie remains finance director.

Finsbury chief executive Dave Brooks said it would be a great relief to get on with the business of baking after months of negotiation. "As two separate companies, Lightbody and Finsbury were excellent, but it became apparent that it made sense to bring the two together, given that we’ve got such a similar outlook," he said. "I know the whole team in the new enlarged group cannot wait to get cracking."

The Lightbody Group, which focuses on the celebration and licensed character cake market, runs two bakeries in Hamilton and a depot and European sales office in Rennes, France.

Brooks said the enlarged group’s first task would be to close the California Cake site at Coatbridge and transfer production to the nearby Hamilton site.