The German subsidiary of Swiss bakery group Hiestand has acquired Back & Friends, a German distributor of deep frozen bakery goods, for €11.6m (US$14.5m).

Hiestand said that with the acquisition it would become Germany's largest distributor of deep frozen bakery goods, with nationwide coverage. Back & Friends, which owns brands such as Golden Door and Polarfrost, had sales of around €20m in fiscal 2003, while Hiestand Germany had sales of €78m.

Hiestand also announced that it has appointed Urs Jordi as chief operating officer as of 1 February. Jordi has been with Hiestand since 1996, holding the position of CEO of Hiestand's Polish operations until 2002, when he became a member of the group's executive committee and was responsible for production and logistics.