The management team behind a buyout at UK biscuit maker Thomas J Fudge’s have sold their stakes in the business and left the company amid a shake-up by private-equity investor Livingbridge.

Thomas J Fudge’s joint managing directors Paul Vita and Vickie Best have “stepped down” from the management team as part of a review of the company’s management structure, Livingbridge told just-food. No other reason was given for the departures of Vita and Best.

Garry Biggs, who has over 30 years of experience in the food industry, including stints at Denby and United Biscuits, has been appointed Thomas J Fudge’s CEO.

In addition, Simon Tovey, Richard Littlewood and Emma Davies have recently joined the biscuit maker as commercial director, operations director and finance director respectively. “They bring with them significant experience of scaling up successful international consumer brands,” the Livingbridge spokesperson said.

Last year, Dorset-based Thomas J Fudge’s relinquished 100 years of family ownership after selling its entire interest in the firm to Livingbridge, Vita and Best.

Thomas J Fudge’s produces crackers and Florentines and operates from a 32,000 sq ft site in Dorset. With 133 workers, the company produced around 6.5m biscuits a week in 2015. Although premium biscuits comprise only 4% of the UK biscuit market, the segment is increasing by 10% a year. Thomas J Fudge’s recorded a turnover of GBP11m (US$14.3m) and pre-tax profits of GBP331,000 in 2015.

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By GlobalData

The company’s products are sold via high-end retailers such as Fortnum & Mason in London, as well as in supermarkets including Waitrose, Tesco and Morrisons. At the time of the sale to Livingbridge, no financial details were divulged.