UK biscuit brands McVities, Hob Nobs and Jaffa cakes are being sold to Turkish food giant Yildiz, when United Biscuits are taken over in a deal worth £2bn.
United Biscuits, makers of some of the nations most well loved biscuits, was sold off after a bidding war from new owners Yildiz, fought off competition from big names like Kellogg’s and Burton. The Turkish firm has no plans to terminate production in the UK, with hopes of continuing production with existing management, Chief Executive Martin Glenn.
Yildiz intends to invest more in UK and European operations by allowing United Biscuits to fulfil its international growth ambitions to become a global brand. United Biscuits, whose products include Mini Cheddars, Penguin, and Twiglets, were previously bought by private equity owners Blackstone and PAI in 2006 for £1.6bn. During their time, they sold KP snacks in 2012 for a sum of £500mn. With a UK strong workforce of 4,600 at 7 sites they have since remained market leaders, against rivals Burton and J Lyons & Co.
Yildiz’s purchase is the start of a greater expansion into the global foods market. The privately held company founded in 1944, owns chocolate and biscuit company Ulker Biskuvi Sanayi. Their products now range from beverages to frozen foods and in 2013, boasted sales of $7bn. Analysts have stated, the merger will double international sales for Yildiz, with revenues up by 70pc.
As the leading manufacturer and marketer of biscuits in the UK, and second in the Netherlands, it’s a huge loss for Blackstone and PAI. However, the sellers are optimistic at the expansion, and increased opportunity from its sale. Frederic Stevenin, a partner at PAI Partners, said: “United Biscuits is an iconic business with leading global brands. We are very proud to have been part of its development and wish everyone at the company continued successes over the years ahead.”