The Protein Works, a sports-nutrition business based in Cheshire in England’s north west, has carried out a management boy-out (MBO) with the backing of local investment firm YFM Equity Partners.

YFM used GBP6m (US$7.6m) from its Buyout Fund I to support management in buying out The Protein Works from B&B Investment Partners. Its investment stake in the business has not been disclosed.

Founded in 2012, The Protein Works is a direct-to-consumer business that sells a range of protein powders, snacks, supplements and foods, manufactured at its 34,000 sq ft facility in Runcorn. It has an in-house bakery and also provides vegan products.

The Protein Works sells its products to consumers in the UK and the EU through its website and also sells to markets further afield via a network of international distributors.

The business is run by CEO Mark Coxhead, who co-founded the business, and marketing director Laura Keir.

The company has “enjoyed a sustained period of growth”, YFM said, without providing a time-frame. The private-equity firm said The Protein Works expects to reach GBP13m of sales this year.

Coxhead said: “It’s a very exciting time at The Protein Works as we embark on a new phase of expansion. The brand’s premium range of products have been well received in diverse markets and cultures around the world, illustrating its incredible potential. Partnering with YFM will help us to make this unique brand truly global and give millions more the opportunity to snack healthy on everything from Protein Crunkies to Loaded Nut Butters.”

Andy Thomas, a partner at YFM, said: “The Protein Works is ideally placed to serve customers seeking to make protein and other healthy supplements part of their everyday lifestyle. The team have developed an exciting proposition that consumers can trust, and we’re looking forward to working with them to grow the brand, both in the UK and globally.” 

As part of the transaction, Arvin Ghoora, a former executive at IPL International Procurement and Logistics and at Community Foods, an importer and distributor of dry foods, will join The Protein Works as chief financial officer. The company plans to make further board appointments in the coming months.