UK- 2 Sisters Foods, one of the largest privately owned food manufacturing companies in the UK, is in the process of offloading its bakery division as part of strategy to focus more on its core business, poultry.

The company has already struck a conditional agreement with an Irish boutique investment firm for the bakery business which includes Holland’s Pies and Irish frozen pastry supplier Portumna.

The transaction process is ongoing, and the company spokesperson says that a full update regarding the sale of the establishments will be provided once they receive the outcome of the transaction.

We are currently progressing a sales process for our Holland’s Pies and Portumna pastry businesses with an interested party. We will be able to update fully once we have an outcome of the transaction process,” a spokesperson said in a brief statement provided to Just Food.

2 Sisters, has under the investment vehicle-Boparan Private Office (BPO), in the recent past been giving away its affiliate companies in baking to focus on the poultry business.

Most of these businesses came into the poultry producer’s fold in 2011 when it acquired Northern Foods in a deal worth £342m.

On September 2020, for instance, 2 Sisters sold the Fox’s Biscuits brand to Ferrero SpA, an Italian multinational specializing in the production of chocolate and snacks.

2 Sisters bakery division, of which Holland’s Pies and Portumna are both part, includes pies and puddings with Holland’s Pies becoming the last business to go under the Northern Foods purchase.

Holland’s Pies – based in the north-west county of Lancashire –supplies retail, fish and chip shops, and sports venues and employs 500 staff in the UK and Ireland.

Portumna of County Galway, Ireland, produces pies as well but also supplies other savory pastry items, such as sausage rolls and quiches to the retail and food service channels.

Other than private-label poultry and the Buxted chicken brand, 2 Sisters will be left with its so-called Meal Solutions division once the bakery assets have gone under the Cavaghan & Gray, Grimsby Soups and Sauces, Gunstones, RF Brookes, and The Pizza Factory units.

According to the company’s spokesperson, the move to disband the bakery division was based on the latest accounts filled in July with London-based Companies House.

In the filings, the group made an after-tax loss of GBP74.9m (US$91.8m) in the 12 months to 31 July 2021, compared to a GBP25.9m loss a year earlier.

There was an additional GBP12.8m in exceptional incurred costs and a turnover of up 10.3% at GBP1.4bn, added the spokesperson.

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