GraceKennedy Limited has acquired the WT (Holdings) Limited Group (“WT Foods”) of the United Kingdom, a leading ethnic and speciality foods supplier, from Bridgepoint Capital Limited, a European private equity firm for an undisclosed price.
WT Foods comprises three main businesses: Enco, a leading supplier of Afro-Caribbean foods and drinks with principal brands being the Nurishment, Encona and Dunn's River brands, Chadha, a specialist supplier of Oriental products to the grocery trade, and Funnybones, an American, Mexican, Cajun, Indian and Oriental food specialist for the foodservice market.
The WT Foods group operates from a modern distribution facility of 119,000 sq. ft. providing ambient, chilled and frozen space, and 20,000 sq. ft. of office accommodation located in Welwyn Garden City, approximately 23 miles north of Central London.
The annualised sales of the WT Foods group are currently c.£60 million per annum. In 2005, the total market for ethnic foods in the UK was estimated at £1.3 billion.
Welcoming the acquisition, GraceKennedy Chairman & CEO Douglas Orane, said: "WT Foods will contribute immediately to the continuing transformation of our company into a global consumer group with its roots in Jamaica. GraceKennedy looks forward to connecting with new customers in the retail, wholesale and food service markets in the UK."
Clive Sharpe, Chairman of WT Foods, added: "WT Foods is an entirely complementary acquisition for the GraceKennedy group of companies and will benefit from being part of a larger organisation with similar companies across the Caribbean and in North and Central America."
GraceKennedy is one of the Caribbean's largest and most dynamic corporate entities, listed on the stock exchanges of Jamaica, Trinidad, Barbados and the Eastern Caribbean. The GraceKennedy Group has interests in the food trading, retail and distribution, banking, insurance and money services sectors with revenues in 2006 of over £273 million ( JA$33 billion). See www.gracekennedy.com.
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