Bulgarian organic food producer Smart Organic has snapped up insolvent Germany-based nut butter maker Naughty Nuts.

Founded in 2021 in Cologne, the German start-up has been sold for €150,000 ($163,400) after going bust last year.

The nut spread company turned over €2.5m in 2022 but could not secure enough investment capital to support its growth, according to a statement from Smart Organic. The Bulgarian company acquired the assets of Naughty Nuts, not the liabilities, through bankruptcy proceedings.

Naughty Nuts produces nut butters and distributes them to more than 1,200 retail locations, including German major supermarket Edeka. It will join the German subsidiary of Smart Organic, which sells organic and protein bars, among other snacks.

By moving the production of Naughty Nuts’ spreads to the Smart Organic manufacturing facilities, the Sofia-based company said it expects its new asset to become profitable.

The two founders of the start-up, Benjamin Porten and Lorenz Greiner, will head the German subsidiary of Smart Organic and “will be supported by their current employees, who will also join the new organisation”, according to Smart Organic.

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“We look forward to becoming part of the Smart Organic family and benefiting from its scale and production capabilities. Both teams share the same values and work towards the same mission: to make clean, healthy and delicious food affordable for a growing number of consumers,” Greiner said in a post on LinkedIn.

Yani Dragov, founder and managing director of Smart Organic, said: “With more than 13 years of success in launching organic and vegan flagship brands in European and global markets, we see this acquisition as a promising milestone in our further DACH expansion. It is a clear, strategic decision for the future development of the company.”

In April, Smart Organic reported a 46% annual rise in first-quarter consolidated revenue to Lv17.3m ($9.7m) after sales on the German market spiked by 125% on the year.

The company also announced at the same time that a series of new production lines were being installed to increase the production capacity of its existing plants. Overall, the planned investments in machines, equipment and buildings for this year are around Lv13m, according to a statement.

Smart Organic added: “The new capacities have the potential to realise additional revenues of Lv150m per year.”