Harringtons pet food owner ,based in North Yorkshire, has acquired Pet Food UK

A pet food manufacturer in North Yorkshire has acquired another pet nutrition business from its founders and private equity firm Piper.

Thirsk-based Inspired Pet Nutrition (IPN), which is itself controlled by private equity company CapVest Partners, has swooped for Pet Food UK (PFUK).

Thirsk-based Inspired Pet Nutrition (IPN), which is itself controlled by private equity company CapVest Partners, has swooped for Pet Food UK (PFUK).

James Lawson, CEO of IPN, said: “We are very excited to acquire PFUK, which is highly complementary to our business and our values.

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“This acquisition is consistent with our vision to create a unique portfolio of loved and sustainable pet care brands helping make quality pet care affordable and accessible to all.

“PFUK brings to IPN highly recognised super and uber-premium brands with a strong digital presence to augment our strong product portfolio and distribution channels.

“We are impressed by the great progress of PFUK in recent years and we look forward to welcoming the team and further supporting the company in continuing to grow.”

PFUK was founded in 2009 and sells distinctively branded premium dog and cat pet food and treats in the UK and internationally.

Its key brands, ‘Barking Heads’ for dogs and ‘Meowing Heads’ for cats, are predominantly premium natural pet food ranges.

The brands are synonymous with quirky names such as ‘Fat Dog Slim’ and ‘So-fish-ticated Salmon’.

IPN, which is best known for pet food brands Harringtons and Wagg, was acquired by private equity firm CapVest in December 2020.

The acquisition of PFUK is the start of a growth strategy, which will see IPN look to build scale and internationalise over the coming years.

IPN has around 300 people with 200 based in Thirsk.

Kate Briant, partner at CapVest said: “Pet Food UK is a fantastic addition to IPN which helps broaden and supplement our offering.

“It adds high quality brands to the portfolio, creates access to new segments and geographies and unlocks more distribution channels to further enhance our growth prospects.

“We are very pleased to support IPN with its first step in what we hope will be an active acquisition-led growth strategy.”

Rory Gibbs, investment director at Piper, said: “We are very proud of the team we helped to build at Pet Food UK.

“Through our partnership with them we were able to deliver significant growth, doubling sales and developing the brand into a digital first business.

“At investment only 10 per cent of sales in the UK came from digital channels. This has increased to nearly 60 per cent, with 30 per cent of revenue coming from international markets.”

Terms of the transaction were not disclosed. Completion of the transaction is subject to conditions, and it is expected to be completed in the coming weeks.

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