The sale – which totalled almost £25M after adjustments for working capital and net debt in Carr’s – would allow Whitworths access to Scotland and the southeast and north of England for the first time.
Carr’s said it would return £16M of the sale to its shareholders as a special dividend of 17.54p a share. The remaining £8.9M would be used for providing “balance sheet strength” and for expanding the group’s remaining businesses.
‘An exciting stage in Carr’s strategic development’
The group said the sale of its food division supported its growth ambitions. Carr’s chief executive Tim Davies said: “The sale of Carr’s Flour Mills represents an exciting stage in Carr’s strategic development.
“We will continue to focus on our strategy of delivering growth in our UK agriculture business, the development of our international feed supplement businesses and building our specialist engineering division in niche markets across the globe.”
Fellow flour milling business Whitworths said it was delighted with its acquisition of Carr’s Flour Mills.
‘Received material investment’
Whitworths chairman Martin George said: “Carr’s Flour Mills shares a similar history to Whitworths in that it is a long-standing business which has received material investment in recent years.
“The business is a great fit geographically and will give us access to the southeast, north of England and Scottish markets that would otherwise not be available, and means we have national reach.”
Whitworth’s would takeover Carr’s Flour Mills three milling centres in Cumbria, Essex and Fife.
Whitworth’s buys Carr’s Flour Mills
- Carr’s Group sells business for £36M to Whitworths Holdings
- Deal worth £24.9M to Carr’s after working capital and debt
- Special dividend to Carr’s shareholders worth 17.54p a share