Leeds baker sells family-owned business

By James Ridler contact

- Last updated on GMT

Ortons Bakery has been sold to its former manager. Left to right: Catherine Parker, Gary Parker, Jonathon Priestly and Don Orton
Ortons Bakery has been sold to its former manager. Left to right: Catherine Parker, Gary Parker, Jonathon Priestly and Don Orton
Family-owned Ortons Bakery has been sold to former manager and his partner Gary and Catherine Parker, in a seller-funded deal for an undisclosed sum.

Owners Don and Carol Orton have sold their entire issued share capital in the business.

“When Carol and I decided to sell, it was important to us that the bakery continue as a family business,”​ said Don Orton.

“The local communities rely on us as a provider for their oven bottom stone-baked breadcakes and both the skill involved and stone-floored ovens we use are an integral part of what makes us who we are. I’ve passed that knowledge on to Gary over the last ten years.”

‘Local communities rely on us’

The deal was overseen by law firm 3volution, which advised the Ortons on the structure of the sale and its negotiation.

Jonathan Priestley, partner at 3volution, said: “A seller-funded deal was the perfect solution for Ortons and the deal went smoothly from start to finish.

“What suits one company isn’t always the best way forward for the next and it was part of our remit to make sure the transaction wasn’t unnecessarily complicated. There’s nothing to be gained by over baking it in any sense!”

Gary and Catherine Parker will continue to work hands-on in the business alongside its 21 employees. Don Orton will stay part-time at the company as a consultant two days a week.

Artisan bread supplier

Established 36 years ago, Ortons Bakery supplies more than 200 different types of artisan bread and confectionery and delivers about 100,000 units a week to hundreds of outlets in Leeds, including universities and catering companies.

Don Orton added: “We’re looking forward to watching the bakery thrive as Orton’s becomes equally renowned by the growing number of gelatos and sheisha lounges for its cake bases as it is for its breadcakes.”

Meanwhile, last month, baking ingredients manufacturer Real Good Food sold subsidiary Garrett Ingredients to Kent Foods,​ in a deal worth about £1.8m.

Related topics: Bakery

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