UK—Lotus Bakeries is set to acquire 100% of Peter’s Yard, a UK based manufacturer of sourdough crackers, crispbread and sourdough chips based on natural ingredients.

The Belgium-based group has been an investor in the UK sourdough crackers business since 2019 when it acquired a 20% stake in the British company through its venture capital fund Fast Forward 2032, which invests in promising startups in the food sector

Announcing the deal for the remaining shares in the business, Lotus Bakeries said Peter’s Yard turnover in the UK has doubled in the last three years and now amounts to some US$ 6.3 million.

“The price Lotus Bakeries has paid for the other 80% of Peter’s Yard “represents a multiple of circa two times net sales,” he said.

Current Peter’s Yard joint managing directors Ian Tencor and Wendy Wilson-Bett, who founded the company in 2008, will hand over all operational responsibilities to new managing director Jean-Baptiste Robert, a Lotus Bakeries executive.

In a joint statement, Tencor and Wilson-Bett said the “partnership” with Lotus Bakeries had “enabled us to grow faster”.

They added: “Our focus was always on finding a long-term partner for the brand, which convinces us that Peter’s Yard has now found an excellent home within the Lotus Bakeries group brand portfolio.”

The brand becomes part of Lotus Natural Foods, which groups natural and healthy snack brands like Näkd, Bear, Trek and Kiddylicious.

Peter’s Yard manufactures all its products in the UK to its original Swedish recipe using a 45-year-old sourdough starter.

Its range includes Rosemary & Sea Salt Sourdough Crackers, Pink Peppercorn Sourdough Crackers, Seeded Sourdough Flatbreads and West Country Sour Cream & Chive Sourdough Bites.

Isabelle Maes, the CEO of Lotus Bakeries’ natural foods division, said: “With the addition of Peter’s Yard’s delicious sourdough products to the Lotus Bakeries family, we further strengthen our position in the UK and venture our first steps into the savoury snacking category.”

The most recent investment made through FF2032 was in US start-up Good Crisp, a deal announced last year.

In 2021, Lotus Bakeries generated turnover of US$794.1 million up 13.1% on a year earlier. Earnings before interest and taxes stood at US$126. 1 million, a rise of 12.3% on the prior year. Net profit grew 10% to US$ 95.5 million.

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