Nakd owners Natural Balance Foods are reportedly exploring a sale of the business

Nakd owners Natural Balance Foods are reportedly exploring a sale of the business

Burton's Biscuit Co., Kellogg and Hain Celestial have all declined to comment on media speculation they have submitted bids to acquire Natural Balance Foods, the maker of Nakd and Trek health food bars.

According to a report in the Telegraph, Natural Balance Foods has appointed advisory firm Stamford Partners to manage the sales process.

Burton 's "is said to be exploring a GBP60m bid" for the company, stated the publication. Burton's is thought to be attracted by an opportunity to gain a position in the growing healthy snacks sector.

A spokesperson for Burton's told just-food that the company "does not comment on speculation of this nature". A spokesperson for Burton's owner Canada's Ontario Teachers Pension Plan also declined to comment. However, at the time investment vehicle OTPP acquired Burton's the pension plan indicated that it would use its financial clout to expand the business via M&A.

Other players reported to have shown interest include US cereal maker Kellogg and healthy foods manufacturer Hain Celestial.

A spokesperson for Hain Celestial said it was "company policy not to comment on market rumours" while Kellogg told just-food it "does not comment on speculation of this kind".

Earlier this year reports surfaced that Natural Balance Foods was seeking an outside investor.

According to a filing at Companies House, Natural Balance saw its net profit almost double to in GBP1.1m in 2014 from GBP546,000 a year earlier. Operating profit in 2014 was GBP1.3m, compared to GBP681,000 in 2013. Turnover jumped 77% to GBP13.3m.

In the filing one of the owners, Jamie Combs said: "The last 12 months have seen Natural Balance Foods grow at an astonishing rate, this is due to incredibly strong growth in all of our sales categories, particularly the grocery sector. Overall, the growth is underpinned by a mainstream shift towards healthy eating."

Natural Balance Foods yesterday (3 August) did not return requests for comment. Stamford Partners was unavailable for comment.