Musgrave to buy La Rousse to boost foodservice arm

Food wholesale and retail group Musgrave is set to boost its foodservice division by buying La Rousse Foods from Cuisine de France owner Aryzta for an undisclosed sum estimated to be around €30m.

The two parties have reached agreement over the transaction, which is subject to approval by the Competition and Consumer Protection Commission before being completed.

Musgrave chief executive Chris Martin said La Rousse — which supplies food to hotels and restaurants and serves 1,500 customers from facilities in Dublin and Belfast — represents “an excellent strategic fit” and complements Musgrave’s existing foodservice offering.

“The acquisition forms part of our ‘growing good business’ strategy, which focuses on growing our brands in the food market across the island of Ireland,” Mr Martin said.

Musgrave intends to keep operating La Rousse as a standalone brand, with its existing management team, once the acquisition completes.

Aryzta — which holds its AGM in Dublin tomorrow —has been linked to a sale of La Rousse, and other non-core assets, for a few months as it seeks to lower its debt burden.

It only bought La Rousse two years ago for a reported price of between €20m and €30m.

Musgrave was mentioned as a possible bidder for La Rousse back in late September, along with other notable industry players such as Pallas Foods and Spar owner BWG.

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