Ignite Capital gets off to a flying start with maiden acquisition

Ignite Capital, based in Leeds, has announced its maiden acquisition following the purchase of Bristol-based Albert E James & Son, a specialist manufacturer and wholesaler of wild bird food, caged bird feeds and racing pigeon corn mixtures.

The transaction delivered a seven figure return for the vendors Tim and Steve Jones, and also represents the first investment of Ignite’s developing portfolio.

Established in 1962, Albert E James & Son operates under two brands, Country Wide and Willsbridge.

The company manufactures and markets its own unique recipes for birds which are tailored to specifically match the nutritional requirements of the bird and its breed, including a range of corns designed to optimise the performance of racing pigeons.

Ignite Capital, formed in 2017 by managing director Paul Thompson, is a corporate finance boutique offering a range of services relating to the sale and purchase of businesses and is also in the process of developing a portfolio of businesses, through the acquisition of a handful of UK SMEs.

Management buy in candidate Joe Mogg invested alongside Ignite as part of the transaction and will be responsible for the day to day running of the business as managing director.

Thompson said: “I’m delighted to have completed our maiden acquisition. In AE James, we have unearthed a fantastic business with heritage, an established brand and a great range of products. We will preserve the brand and reputation created through years of hard work and stay true to the principles that have allowed this business to stand the test of time.”

Mogg added: “This was an opportunity that I felt was too good to miss. It is rare to find a business as successful as this yet also has so much potential for the future. My aim is to build on the solid foundations created by the vendors and to gradually develop the business and take it onto even greater heights.”

Legal advice and support for the acquirer was provided by Chris Blantern and Daniel Bisby of Schofield Sweeney and funding for the transaction was provided by IGF Group. The sellers were advised by Lee Wojtkiw of The Camlee Group Limited.

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