Investment firm to acquire U.K.-based potato crisps maker

by Eric Schroeder
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NEW YORK — Investcorp, a New York-based investment company with approximately $10.5 billion of assets under management, has agreed to acquire Tyrrells Potato Crisps, a U.K.-based maker of crisps, popcorn and other snacks from Langholm Capital for £100 million ($151.8 million).

Founded at Tyrrells Court Farm, Herefordshire, in 2002, Tyrrells is recognized for its hand cooked potato and vegetable crisps as well as range of premium snacks, including popcorn and “savoury nibbles.” The company employs 270 people and generates in excess of £100 million in retail sales value, Investcorp said.

Approximately 80% of Tyrrells product sales come from the United Kingdom, with the remaining 20% generated from its international markets, including Germany, France, The Netherlands and North America. In the United States, the company’s potato chips primarily are found in supermarkets on the East coast.

“The premium snacks market is very dynamic and attractive,” said Carsten Hagenbucher, principal in Investcorp’s European corporate investments team. “Tyrrells’ offering is unique and the business has an excellent position in the U.K. and a rapidly growing international footprint. We are excited about partnering with Tyrrells’ entrepreneurial management team to accelerate the international expansion and to build a world-class business.”

David Milner, chief executive of Tyrrells, added, “Investcorp’s wealth of experience in supporting premium businesses executing their ambitious growth strategies will be invaluable. At Tyrrells, we have exciting plans to leverage our differentiated, high quality brand both at home as well as abroad. Investcorp is the ideal partner to help us all at Tyrrells Court Farm accelerate our growth momentum.”

Over the past 18 months, Investcorp has invested in six portfolio companies, including the Scandinavian luxury brand, Georg Jensen, and leading oil services provider, Hydrasun. The investment firm currently has no other food or beverage investments, but in the past has invested in A&W, Dellwood (a processor and distributor of dairy products), and Main Street Dairy.

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