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Business & Economy

Wholesaler Kitwave expands with Alpine Fine Foods deal

An independent wholesaler has strengthened its foodservice sector presence with a deal for a fellow market operator.

Kitwave has bought Alpine Fine Foods Limited for an undisclosed sum.

Alpine provides food wholesale and delivery services across Yorkshire and Humberside, with the £13 million turnover business known for supplying ambient, frozen, chilled and fresh products, including meat, fruit and vegetables.

Bosses at North Shields-headquartered Kitwave say the deal – which follows its purchase of chilled product operator Central Supplies earlier this year – widens the business’ product range and its delivery capabilities.

They added it will join York-based Miller Food Service, which Kitwave bought in a previous acquisition, in bolstering the company’s market influence.

Under the terms of the agreement, Ben Maxted, Kitwave’s head of frozen and chilled operations, will join the board of Hull-based Alpine Fine Foods alongside Gareth Wilson, managing director of Miller Food Service.

Ben said: “The business is renowned for providing a quality delivered solution to its customers and this ethos is a key part of the Kitwave Group.

“We look forward to building further our foodservice offering to the benefit of both customers and suppliers alike.”

Phil Davis, Alpine Fine Food’s managing director, added: “The acquisition has come at an exciting time.

“After an already successful year, this is a positive move towards growing the business further.”

The acquisition was supported by new finance facilities made available by Barclays Bank and Yorkshire Bank.

Kitwave was supported by Muckle LLP and KPMG, which provided legal and due diligence services.

Founded by chief executive Paul Young in 1988, Kitwave has transformed itself from a regional confectionery-based business to a diversified, national wholesaler through a number of acquisitions since 2011.

As well as having nationwide delivery capability, the group has expanded to offer frozen, ambient and own label products to the independent retail, vending and foodservice sectors.