US private equity firm eyes major player in the European private label biscuit market, plans continued expansion

By Gill Hyslop contact

- Last updated on GMT

Biscuit International is the leading manufacturer of private label sweet biscuits in Europe, producing more than 170,000 tons of biscuits and waffles annually. Pic: GettyImages/ALLEKO
Biscuit International is the leading manufacturer of private label sweet biscuits in Europe, producing more than 170,000 tons of biscuits and waffles annually. Pic: GettyImages/ALLEKO

Related tags: Biscuit International, Platinum Equity, Gluten free products, Organic, Biscuits

Los Angeles-based Platinum Equity has entered into exclusive negotiations with Qualium Investissement to acquire Biscuit International, the leading European manufacturer of private label sweet biscuits.

Biscuit International has been on an aggressive growth strategy since it was founded in 2016 – from the merger of Groupe Poult and Banketgroep – acquiring the likes of A&W Feinbackwaren in Germany, Northumbrian Fine Foods in the UK,​ Stroopwafel & Co and Aviateur in the Netherlands​ and Arluy in Spain.

“Biscuit International has an exceptional portfolio and a well-deserved reputation for high-quality products,”​ said Louis Samson, partner, Platinum Equity.

According to Samson, if the talks are successful, Platinum Equity will “support the company’s plan to continue expanding its offering and international reach, both organically and through additional add-on investments.”

Specialised consumer needs

Biscuit International manufacturers a range of products throughout Europe, including traditional biscuits and a growing portfolio of products for consumers with specific dietary requirements, such as organic, low-calorie, sugar, gluten, and dairy-free categories.

The company generated sales in excess of €500m ($553.1m) during the past 12 months, of which approximately two-thirds came from outside France. It is headquartered in Paris and employs around 1,900 people.

“We are proud to have supported the development stages that have led Biscuit International to become a leader in the European private label biscuit market,”​ said Jean Eichenlaub, president of French private equity company Qualium Investissement.

“We are pleased with the progress made with the group and its teams since our initial investment in March 2014, and we are confident about the opportunities ahead with the support of their new shareholder.”

The proposed transaction is subject to regulatory approval and customary closing conditions.

Platinum Equity is a global investment firm with more than $19bn of assets under management and a portfolio of approximately 40 companies in a broad range of markets, including manufacturing, distribution, technology, media and entertainment, among others. Over the past 25 years, Platinum Equity has completed more than 250 acquisitions.

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