United Biscuits said a potential sale “is not surprising given the strong attributes of the business”

United Biscuits said a potential sale “is not surprising given the strong attributes of the business”

United Biscuits has claimed there is "a good level of interest" for its salty snack business after the company sent out sale documents to prospective buyers.

A spokesperson for UB told just-food today (20 September) the company's shareholders are "actively trying to sell the KP snacks business" and that documentation giving details of the business had been sent to potential purchasers.

As a result, the spokesperson said UB is seeing "a good level of interest" from some of those parties.

He added that this "is not surprising given the strong attributes of the business".

He added that these include: "[A] very attractive UK snacking market, with consistent growth of over 5% per annum, by some margin the fastest growing category within the UK packaged food market; strong KP Snacks market position, great UK household brands, [and] multiple opportunities to grow".

This, he said, included "gaining market share through the existing brand portfolio, entry into new areas of the market and M&A (both in the UK and in Continental Europe)".

It is understood the recipients of the sale documents are likely to include many European consumer-focused private-equity firms, US food groups including Kellogg and Kraft Foods, and possibly some Chinese food groups. 

The spokesperson, however, declined to comment on who the recipients were.

Signs that United Biscuits, which sells salty snacks and biscuits, could be split in two emerged in March when the company told just-food it was creating two business units within its UK structure, a move seen as a potential pre-cursor for the break-up of the company.

Last month, Nick Bunker, the head of Kraft Foods' businesses in the UK and Ireland, became CEO of the unit.

Credit Suisse is said to be running the sale.