Sky News has revealed that talks are ongoing between Boparan Holdings, which owns 2 Sisters Food Group about merging the company’s Fox‘s Biscuits brand with Burton’s Biscuits manufacturer, Jammie Dodgers.
If the deal succeeds, it will result in the creation of a company whose value would be £400M with a market share of 20%, hence making it the United Kingdom’s second largest sweet biscuit manufacturer. Currently, United Biscuits which owns MacVitie’s is leading in the market.
News about the stated merger came at the time when 2 Sisters Food Group proprietor Ranjit Boparan was confronted by additional investigations by Food Standards Agency (abbreviated as FSA). There had been claims of food safety breaches at the company’s West Bromwich factory.
Fox’s Biscuits and Burton’s Biscuits merger might result in a faster initial public offering of the expanded biscuit business on the London Stock Exchange.
The possible CEO of the new merged business identified
The broadcaster claimed that Clive Sharpe, First Milk Chairman, and formerly the CEO of Golden Wonder, a snack manufacturing company is likely to be the CEO of the new merged business. Investment bank Cenkos was allegedly managing the floating of the business on the LSE.
FoodManufacture.co.uk quoted a spokesperson for Burton’s Biscuit saying: “We never comment on speculation of this nature.”
An insider who spoke to FoodManufacture.co.uk revealed that it was believed that Burton’s Biscuits approached Boparan Holdings last year over the possible sale of Fox’s Biscuits.
Been talking for “many years”
The source said that the two businesses have been holding talks for “many years.” However, the deal was thought to have flopped following Boparan Holdings refusal to accept an offer that was less than £350M.
News about the merger of the two businesses came after allegations in the first week of October of food safety violations at 2 Sister plant in West Bromwich.
The operations at the factory were suspended after The Guardian and ITV News made joint undercover investigation and alleged that chicken previously returned to the factory by supermarket supply centres was being repackaged and taken back to retailers.
The FSA will extend its investigation into the firm’s poultry plants both in England and Wales. This comes after its preliminary inspection uncovered what it termed as “issues requiring management attention”.
On the other hand, the FSA said the initial investigation did not identify any food safety issues at the 2 Sister’s West Bromwich factory.