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Liverpool Headquartered Princes Group Sold for £700m

Liverpool Business News – On Monday it was announced that the Liverpool Headquartered Princes Group is to be acquired by Italian based Newlat Food S.p.A from the Mitsubishi Corporation, encompassing all current operations and brands in an agreement valued at £700m.

The news marks a significant upswing in the valuation of the business, as just over a year ago, in March 2023 when Mitsubishi Corporation signalled its intent to sell, potential buyers, including Bain Capital-backed Valeo Foods and the Aurelius Group investment firm, were reported at the time, to be considering bids of around £400.

Following the completion of the acquisition, Newlat Food S.p.A has indicated that it will rebrand and drop its Newlat Food name and the new, bigger group (including) the Princes Limited will become New Princes Group in a move that is believed to be due to wider brand recognition of the Princes name.

Although Princes Limited will retain its identity and operate as a UK-based subsidiary of the New Princes Group it is unclear if there are future plans to move the Liverpool Headquartered Princes Group’s head office, to another location.

The acquisition is yet to receive backing from the Dutch Works Council and European Works Council and before the deal is complete, finalisation of the group’s audited accounts and a number of customary regulatory approvals need to be sought first.

Liverpool Headquartered Princes Group has seen many milestones in its long history. From its founding by William Muirhead Simpson and Frank Roberts in Liverpool in 1880 the business changed its name from Simpson Roberts and adopted the Princes name in 1890. By 1915 Princes was the world’s largest exporter of lobster, handling one third of the world’s lobster trade.

In addition to the Princes branded products, other brands such as Mazzola, Pura and Crisp n’ Dry cooking oils, Flora and Olivio spreads, Crosse & Blackwell, Napolina, Branston and Batchelors making Princes one of the UK’s largest food and drink groups.

Newlat is an international agro-food group with a strong heritage, producing and distributing dairy, baby food, pasta, bakery, gluten free, instant hot snacks and other specialty food products mainly under its own brands as well as private label. Newlat. has operations in 4 countries, namely Italy, U.K., Germany and France, through its subsidiaries Centrale del Latte d’Italia, Symington’s, Newlat GmbH and EM Foods. Newlat Food S.p.A and its subsidiary Centrale del Latte d’Italia are both listed on the Milan Stock Exchange.

Combining these two large, complementary businesses would (on approval) create a leading player in the European food industry with a revenue of circa €2.8 billion and an adjusted EBITDA of some €190 million.

By leveraging the expertise, commercial networks, and know-how of the group the management is optimistic of increasing the groups annual turnover to €5 billion by 2030.

In addition to the Liverpool Headquartered Princes Group’s UK presence the company has a presence across continental Europe, which is managed from the Netherlands, dedicated sales and marketing offices in Poland, tuna processing facilities in Mauritius, tomato processing in Italy and edible oils production in Poland.

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