A statement released today (10 October) has revealed that the cake business of UK food group Northern Foods will soon be expanded with the company's acquisition of the ambient and chilled cake supplier R & K Wise for £0.5m.

The buyout of the privately owned company, which has a net book value of £1.6m, will also involve the assumption of £4m in debts. Wise principally supplies Marks and Spencer and last year its turnover reached £23m, although after tax it incurred losses of £1.7m.

Plans for streamlining after the buyout will see Northern closing Wise's bakeries in Swindon in a move to transfer production to the company's existing Park Cakes manufacturing outlets in Bolton and Oldham. Consultation with employee representatives from the Swindon plants will begin immediately.

CEO at Northern Foods, Jo Stewart, commented: "We are pleased to take this opportunity to enhance our established position as a leading UK cake supplier."