H&B Foods sold in MBO

The cheese company is back under the management of its previous owners


Cheese company H&B Foods is back under the ownership of its founders following a management buy-out (MBO).

The company was bought by the Novel Group just under three years ago, however its buyer was subsequently placed into administration forcing a sale of its assets. H&B has now been bought through a MBO backed by Straumur Burdaras Investment Bank, which means the jobs of the 300 employees should be saved. The £76.3m turnover company, headquartered in London, is the largest speciality cheese and speciality foods wholesaler and supplier in the UK. Its customers include Harrods, The Ritz, Pret A Manger and a string of five star hotels and restaurants. “This is a hugely successful company and I believe this move will only enhance the brand and take the business from strength to strength,” says sales director Simon Yorke. “We have a very strong market share and will increase that with our brilliant products and first-class staff. We also believe our customers can only be reassured by the fact the company is back in the hands of the founding management team. It is business as usual.” EMC Corporate Finance chief executive Nik Askaroff and finance specialist Terry Rainback acted as advisors to the management team and advised on the financial restructuring of the company.   “H&B has an excellent reputation in the cheese and speciality food sector and the management team has developed an enviable position for the company which needed to be protected,” said Rainback. “Difficulties surrounding the financial position of the holding group were causing serious and unnecessary disruption to the trading companies and, unless corrected, could have completely undermined their operations. “Working closely with the management team, we are delighted to have been able to negotiate new terms to enable the business to move forward positively.” © Crimson Business Ltd. 2009

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