Yorkshire-based surplus food business acquired in deal worth £82.5m

Listed waste management business Biffa has acquired a Yorkshire-based surplus food redistributor in an £82.5m deal.

It has bought Company Shop Limited (CSG) which is based in Barnsley.

CSG prevents waste by identifying surplus produce and then collecting, processing and redistributing it for sale through its network of membership-based outlets.

Surplus produce includes production overruns, trial products, or items that have been incorrectly labelled or packaged, which without intervention would be destined to become waste. 

Biffa says the acquisition has been funded from existing committed debt facilities and is immediately earnings enhancing on completion.

Michael Topham, chief executive of Biffa, said: “The acquisition of Company Shop Group strengthens Biffa’s leadership position in the UK circular economy.

“Its redistribution services complement our established waste and recycling services, and supply of closed loop recycled raw materials.

“As the only commercial redistributor of scale in the UK, Company Shop Group is the market-leader in a growing sector, with a strong, credible growth plan which we will deliver together.

“Biffa and Company Shop Group share a common set of goals, including the continued development of profitable, sustainable waste management solutions while making a meaningful contribution to society.”

Steph McGinty, group managing director of Company Shop Group, added: We are proud to be the UK’s leading redistributor of surplus food and household products.

Hallmarked by long-standing and powerful partnerships, at the heart of our business is the understanding that big challenges need big solutions, and these are always better delivered in partnership.

“Together, as part of Biffa plc and aligned in vision and purpose, we will continue to innovate and grow, enabling us to provide even more sustainable solutions for all our stakeholders.”

John Marren, founder of Company Shop Group, said: “Biffa plc is another vanguard, changing the way that people think about waste.

“Our aligned values and shared ambition will enable both the delivery of a truly unique circular economy proposition to industry alongside continued growth in the important role that sustainable redistribution plays.

“I am proud that this decision will enable Company Shop Group to step confidently into the future, as part of the global movement to reduce waste in our industry and our society.”

Company Shop was advised by a multi-disciplinary KPMG team.

Christian Mayo, who leads the firm’s Corporate Finance practice in Yorkshire, said: “Company Shop has led the way in reducing food waste in the UK.

“Its acquisition by Biffa creates a unique proposition in the waste management industry, adding redistribution to Biffa’s existing capabilities, helping it to play a greater role in the sustainability agenda.”

CIL and Walker Morris also advised the sellers of Company Shop Group.

Walker Morris fielded a multidisciplinary team led by corporate partner Richard Naish with support from Laura Cavell, Jessica Stanley and Abbie Thomas (Corporate); Nicola Parkinson and Luke Riley (Tax); Mark Appleby (Banking); Thomas Jackson (Real Estate); and Matthew Lingard (IP).