Belgian food business buys stake in £36m-turnover manufacturer

A Deeside food manufacturer has received investment from a Belgian food business in a deal that will allow the company to build a new plant and expand its supply of frozen ready meals to foodservice and retail markets.

Ter Beke Food Group Nv has bougth an undisclosed equity stake in KK Fine Foods Plc – a deal which KK says will allow it to add more than £40m of capacity over the next two years.

KK, which had a turnover of £36.2m in 2016 and employs more than 300 staff, recently completed the purchase of a second manufacturing site of 60,000 sq ft adjacent to its existing site and the investment money will initially be used to design and build the new plant over the next 12 months.

The link-up between the two companies will allow Ter Beke, which specialises in the supply of lasagne and pasta based meals worldwide, to enter the UK marketplace.

The existing team, headed by managing director Samir Edwards, will continue to manage the business.

Edwards said: “The exciting thing for myself and the team is that we can continue to service our existing customers’ needs and provide them with the benefits of the additional capacity that we intend to build into the business over the next 12 months. Innovation and creativity really have been the cornerstone of KK’s successes to date and we intend on keeping this firm focus on where consumers want to go with their next meal.

“Working with Ter Beke will allow us to invest into our core business, using the knowledge and experience that they have built up over many years within the pasta category, whilst also allowing us to accelerate our capital expenditure plans to ensure that we can react to a buoyant marketplace.

“Ter Beke is a business with a strong tradition in family values, sharing a similar philosophy to the KK business which has been built on the back of the passion and drive of its founder Leyla Edwards over the last 30 years. Leyla will continue as an ambassador for the business and will also support me as I look to take KK Fine Foods on to the next step of its journey.”

Dirk Goeminne, chief executive at Ter Beke, said: “I have met many passionate developers at KK Fine Foods and have had the good fortune of sampling their creations. Their passion for food is exceptional and one that should be nurtured. For that reason, we have made a conscious decision for KK Fine Foods to continue operating independently.”

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