Private equity firm snaps up cake supplier

Cake manufacturer Bright Blue Foods has been acquired today for an undisclosed sum by private equity investor Endless. 

Bright Blue Foods is a big player in the private-label and ambient cake market in the UK, supplying products for Tesco, Marks & Spencer, Asda, Aldi and Morrisons. With sales expected to exceed £70m this year, it employs 700 staff across its headquarters in Blackburn and at two sites in Bradford and Poland.

Bright Blue Foods has also developed a growing brand business with Aunt Bessie’s, which expanded into ambient cakes in May this year, and with Mars.

The acquisition marks Endless’ 10th investment of 2015.

Di Walker, who works with Endless at Karro Food Group, has joined the board as non-executive director. Steve Crossley, who joined Bright Blue in October 2014, will continue to lead the business as chief executive. 

Private equity firm NBGI will continue to back Bright Blue as a co-investor alongside Endless, having led the original management buyout from McCambridge Group nearly three years ago.

Crossley said: “We have a strong, well-invested business with real competitive advantages and we are delighted that Endless is keen to back our growth plan. Our recent bakery rationalisation in the UK and expansion in Poland gives us an opportunity to provide our customers with a compelling proposition and we have high aspirations for the future. This is an exciting time for everyone at Bright Blue Foods and we intend to take full advantage of the support provided by our new investors.”

Mathew Deering, partner at Endless, said: “We are delighted to have the chance to back Bright Blue and support Steve and the team’s ambitions to take a long-established north west business forward.”

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