Gastronomica Roscio, an Italian manufacturer of chilled and frozen ready-meals, has sold a majority stake to local private-equity firm DeA Capital.

Founded in 1961, Gastronomica Roscio is located in Vidigulfo, in the province of Pavia. The Roscio family owners will retain a stake in the business, which will continue to be run by its president Francesco Roscio for the time being.

Its portfolio of gluten-free meals also includes sauces and plant-based burgers. Gastronomica Roscio posted revenues last year of EUR29m (US$34.2m) and EBITDA of EUR5m.

The acquired stake and financial terms have not been disclosed.

A spokesperson for DeA Capital confirmed Gastronomica Roscio is predominately a private-label supplier to retailers but is also a co-packer for “international brands” and an operator in the foodservice channel.

DeA Capital, which is focused on the agri-food sector, has invested in the business via its newly-launched Taste of Italy 2 fund and plans to support Gastronomica Roscio’s growth both locally and internationally, it said in a statement. The investor will also target acquisitions for the company. 

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The DeA Capital spokesperson told just-food 98% of Gastronomica Roscio’s business is conducted in Italy and the investor plans to hire a new management team, but is not disclosing any further details at this time.  

Andrea Bertoncello, managing director of Taste of Italy 2, said: “Gastronomica Roscio is a splendid story of a family business born almost 60 years ago. We are proud to be part of it and we will put everything at the service of the company with our commitment to support its further development.”

Financing for the deal was provided by French bank Crédit Agricole and Italian lender Intesa Sanpaolo.

Nunzia Roscio, who, according to DeA Capital is a “selling shareholder”, said: “Thanks to the support of Taste of Italy 2 we hope to accelerate the growth of Gastronomica Roscio, both on the national market and on foreign markets. We are also confident that together we will be able to evolve the company, though preserving that fundamental connotation of craftsmanship that has always distinguished the products.”