UK food manufacturer Cranswick has confirmed it is in talks to buy local pet-food business Inspired Pet Nutrition.
Cranswick said if the talks are fruitful it will partly fund the deal via a share sale.
In an announcement today (16 December) to the London Stock Exchange, on which Cranswick is listed, the bacon-to-olives supplier said it noted recent media speculation with regard to a potential acquisition.
“In line with the company’s stated long-term growth strategy to expand its product offering through further diversification, Cranswick regularly considers acquisition opportunities,” the company said.
“The board confirms that it is currently engaged in a process regarding the potential acquisition of Inspired Pet Nutrition, a leading UK pet-food business. If successful, the group’s current intention is to part-finance the acquisition via an equity placing of less than 10% of issued share capital to investors.”
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Cranswick said there can be no certainty the deal will happen.
Earlier in the day, Sky News reported that several private-equity firms had also tabled bids for the pet-food firm, which is based in North Yorkshire in northern England, and a decision about the outcome of the sale process is expected "within days".
Sky suggested Cranswick would be an unexpected winner in the auction as it would herald the company's return to the pet-food market after a long absence.
Inspired Pet Nutrition counts Harrington's and Wagg among its brands.