£45m Notts pet food manufacturer sold

Notts pet treats manufacturer Armitage Pet Care has been sold to investment firm Rutland Partners.

Armitage is the largest independent manufacturer and supplier of premium branded pet treats and accessories in the UK.

The business, which was granted the Royal Warrant in 1976, has a manufacturing and distribution base in Colwick, near Nottingham.

Armitage supplies over 2,000 products across the dog, cat, small domestic pets, bird and fish categories to a broad customer base including the major supermarkets and pet specialist retailers.

The company currently has a turnover of around £45m.

Armitage represents the sixth investment from Rutland Fund III and the third this year, following on from investments in Omar Group and Aston Barclay. The balance of funding is coming from debt facilities provided by Crescent Capital Group.

Ben Slatter, partner at Rutland said: “We are delighted to have completed our investment in Armitage. The business has built a strong position in a growing market and is well positioned for future growth. We are looking forward to supporting the management team and working with them to further develop the business over the coming years.”

Paul Bousfield, chief executive of Armitage said: “We are proud of developing Armitage into a high-quality treats and accessories business that has significantly changed the shape of the pet category. We are delighted to be partnering with Rutland who we are confident will be able to support us in our ambitious plans for the next phase of growth.”

The transaction was led on behalf of Rutland by Ben Slatter, Kajen Mohanadas, Matthew Hamilton-Allen, Sarah Hollyhead and assisted by Nick Morrill of PwC.

PwC’s Midlands deals team acted as lead advisor to the shareholders. PwC also provided tax advice with Shakespeare Martineau providing legal advice.

Gavin Cummings and Richard Medd of Browne Jacobson’s Nottingham office acted for management on the deal.

Cara Haffey, PwC corporate finance partner, said: “We are pleased to have supported the shareholders in the sale of the business, which has become a market leader thanks to its innovative products and highly reputable GoodBoy brand.

“We look forward to seeing its continued growth under Paul Bousfield and his team, supported by Rutland’s investment and are delighted have lead on another significant transaction in the pet sector.”

The PwC corporate finance team was led by Tom Copeland, James Lander and David Issacs and the tax team was led by Will Dowsett and Suzanne Green.