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Westland Horticulture acquires Cranswick Pet Products

Published: 11 April 2012
The garden products supplier announces the purchase of Cranswick - a leading manufacturer in the wild bird and small animal markets.
The move follows Westland's venture into the wild bird market this year with the launch of its Peckish range. By joining together with Cranswick, Westland hopes to accelerate the growth of Peckish, benefiting from the pet products supplier's expertise in the market and its 130,000 sq ft manufacturing plant in East Yorkshire.

Westland joint managing director Edward Conroy said: "The purchase of Cranswick Pet Products is the perfect complement to our existing business and reinforces our strategy to keep driving participation in gardening by delivering unique products to make the garden a more enjoyable environment. A key reason for Westland to invest in Cranswick was the knowledge and the commitment of the senior management team, as well as its high quality workforce."

Cranswick Pet Products national sales manager Sam Marriage said: "We are incredibly excited with the new opportunity to merge with Westland. We are confident that, together as one, we can grow the market and communicate the benefits of quality bird food."

Cranswick Pet Products, based in Driffield, East Yorkshire, manufactures a wide range of food for wild and indoor birds and other small domestic animals. Its brands include Bucktons, Nature's Feast, Cheeky Boy and Cranswick own-label.

Its parent firm, Cranswick Pets and Aquatics, which also owns The Tropical Marine Centre, was named as one of Britain's fastest growing private equity backed firms in the Buyout Track 100, published by the Sunday Times and accountancy firm Deloitte. It ranked 57 in the league table, ahead of discount retailer Poundland, which sat in 86th place.

Previously owned by pork products manufacturer Cranswick, the pets and aquatics arm was acquired in a £17m MBO by its management team in April 2009. The deal was backed by Lloyds TSB Development Capital - the private equity arm of Lloyds Banking Group.

For the year ended March, 2011, the group recorded sales of nearly £58m, up 22% on the previous year. Pre-tax profit was up 28% to £4.4m.

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