InsightsClient Story - Commercial Law - POSTED: April 28 2015
“A Tasty Deal” – Kent Crisps
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- Kent Crisps was founded in 2011 and has won several awards from the Guild of Fine Foods. Stocked in Waitrose and local stores across Kent, the crisps are 100% GM free and use ingredients from local firms including Biddenden Vineyard, Shepherd Neame and Ashmore Farmhouse cheese.
- Originally part of the Quex Park Estates Company Limited, Kent Crisps and Kentish Oils were a non-core business as part of this group, which was limiting its ability to achieve its full potential.
- Management buy-out of the Kent Crisps and Kentish Oils business by Angela Curwen, through AMC Foods Limited an SPV created for this purpose.
- The deal required an analysis of the business’ financial position and future projections, based on alternative suppliers and improved profitability sales and delivery.
- The financial arrangements and purchase price structure were complex, requiring a thorough understanding of the previous internal funding arrangements.
- A bespoke purchase price structure was required to progress the deal. Limited funds were available for upfront payment, so an agreement was required which allowed the seller to benefit proportionately from certain future payments, whilst not hampering the ongoing financial viability of the new company.
- Due to the deferred nature of a considerable proportion of the purchase price, security was required for non-payment and an appropriate and mutually agreeable arrangement was necessary.
- These complexities made it necessary for the legal and accounting teams to take a very collaborative approach in striking a mutually agreeable bargain. A very fine balance was required to allow the interests of both parties to be accommodated such that a deal could proceed.
- The deal allowed the business to review supplier arrangements and deliver a better, more profitable, product range for the future.
- Without the MBO, it is likely that the lack of active commercial development of the business would have led to its cessation and the loss of a number of jobs and an important regional brand.
- Manufacturing remains a key sector in driving economic recovery and the deal enables a long-term plan for the expansion of the firm’s manufacturing capability, potentially leading to further employment opportunities in a geographical area where job creation is vital. Indeed, KCC has been keen to actively promote job creation in the region through the regional growth fund.
The Corporate team, Brachers – Our understanding of the client’s needs and ability to pro-actively deliver the transaction to the timetable required ensured completion. Our ability to think laterally to resolve problems and understand each parties’ needs allowed for the fine balance of the transaction to be achieved.
“Food miles and local sourcing continues to be incredibly important for UK consumers, and we seeing exciting opportunities for the business. It has also been a true pleasure working with the team and will definitely be working together in the future!”
Angie Curwen, Managing Director, Kent Crisps
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