Cranswick acquires poultry business

Meat producer Cranswick has today announced that it has acquired the whole of the issued share capital of CCL Holdings Limited (Crown), alongside its 100%-owned subsidiary Crown Chicken Limited from the Thacker family and management. 

Funded by existing bank facilities, the cost of the acquisition was £40 million.

Crown prides itself on being the leading integrated poultry producer in East Anglia. The company breeds, rears and processes fresh chicken for supply to a variety of customers across grocery retail, foodservice, wholesale and manufacturing channels.

The business also has its own milling operation that supplies feed to pig and other poultry producers in the area.

Mill director Nigel Armes will remain with the company, alongside agricultural director Matthew Ward. However, current chairman of Crown, David Thacker, will retire from the business.

“Crown is a well-respected operator in the UK poultry sector and represents an excellent opportunity for Cranswick to continue the development of its UK poultry business, building on the highly successful acquisition of Benson Park, the market-leading producer of premium cooked poultry, in October 2014,” said Adam Couch, chief executive officer of Cranswick.

“This acquisition represents important progress in our long-term growth strategy to develop new product channels in both pork and other proteins.”

For the year ending 32 December 2015, revenue for Crown hit £83.8m while adjusted EBITDA (earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation) was £6.6m. Meanwhile, adjusted gross assets for Crown over the same period were £28.4m. The company employs approximately 400 staff across its operations. The transaction is expected to generate modest earnings, enhancing in the current financial year.

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