Another sweet deal for Catalyst
Catalyst has advised on the sale of Speciality Desserts to Européenne des Desserts (EDD), a French dessert manufacturer.
Started in 1997 by a husband and wife team, Speciality Desserts provides innovative frozen dessert menu solutions to national restaurant, hotel and pub chains.
EDD is a leading supplier of pastry based goods and a range of French frozen desserts to retail and foodservice customers, mainly in France. Customers in France include M&S, LeClerc, Carrefour and Brakes. EDD was originally acquired from Premier Foods in 2009 by Cerea Gestion and Azulis Capital, two French private equity houses. This will be the second acquisition by EDD and its first outside of France.
The size of the UK foodservice industry is set to outstrip the food retail industry in the next couple of years following a move from ‘wet’ to 'dry' in pubs and an increase in eating out. Speciality Desserts will continue to benefit from this trend and the dual impact of its complimentary dessert range and local access to blue chip customers in the UK, makes it an excellent platform for growth for EDD.
Doug Chapman of Speciality Desserts commented, "We are delighted to be part of the EDD family as there are integral similarities in our culture and ethos, with the added advantage of complimentary product portfolios. This will further strengthen Speciality Desserts position as a leader in the field of innovative dessert manufacturing. Catalyst’s dynamic team recognised that the two businesses were an excellent strategic fit."
The Catalyst team was led by partner Jamie Hope in Birmingham with support from food and drink specialist director Simon Peacock. Catalyst’s appointment was a reflection of their in-depth sector knowledge of the food and drink industry. The team produces bespoke research into the sector and works closely with major trade publications including The Grocer for which Catalyst produces the Fast 50, a list of the fastest growing privately owned food and drink businesses.
In addition the ability to access international buyers was key to this transaction and helped secure EDD as the final buyer, as Jamie Hope explains, "Through our dedicated research team, sector focus and our international partnership, Mergers Alliance, we were able to identify potential buyers for the business in a number of countries. This is becoming increasingly important to our clients as the majority of trade buyers are now from outside the UK. Speciality Desserts is a strong well-run business and this new ownership will help it go from strength-to-strength."
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