Crawshaw to raise £9m to support growth

​Butchers’ chain Crawshaw is to raise £9m ​through a share placing to support its ambitious growth plans.

The Rotherham-based firm aims to open up to 200 stores over the next eight years, transforming it from a small regional player to a nationwide chain.

​The company ​has announced two conditional placings, through WH Ireland, to raise gross proceeds of £8.8m from the issue of 20,999,994 new ordinary shares at 5p each.

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The group will hold a general meeting for shareholders in Rotherham on July 22 to pass the placing.

The firm, which was Yorkshire’s biggest share price gainer last year,​ has enjoyed phenomenal growth recently as it taps into consumer demand for quality meat at low prices.​​

Crawshaw’s finance director Lynda Sherratt said the group will initially open 10 new stores a year and this will escalate to 20 or 30 a year. It currently has 21 stores.

The expansion will be made possible by the opening of a new factory and distribution centre in Rotherham.

“The new distribution centre will support 60 shops at the very least,” said Ms Sherratt.

“If we go out in concentric circles to an hour’s distance from Rotherham we can reach the East Midlands, North Yorkshire and Manchester.”

The plan is to expand further across the country and reach the south.

“Eventually we will, of course, go south. We’ll identify a new distribution centre,” said Ms Sherratt.

Crawshaw has been working on a new cost-effective model for its new shops and is opting for single-storey sites.

“We have got a model that is much less expensive,” said Ms Sherratt.

​​Last week Crawshaw announced strong trading with year to date like-for-like sales up 13.4 per cent.

The group is planning to recruit a chief executive officer to spearhead the growth.