Ingredients supplier Ulrick & Short acquired by Novax

By Gwen Ridler

- Last updated on GMT

(left to right) Ulrick & Short CEO Adrian Short and senior investment manager & sector manager Food at Novax, Pär Warnström
(left to right) Ulrick & Short CEO Adrian Short and senior investment manager & sector manager Food at Novax, Pär Warnström

Related tags acquisition Ingredients

Clean label ingredients firm Ulrick & Short has been acquired by Novax, the investment company of Stockholm, Sweden-based Axel Johnson Group, for an undisclosed sum.

Ulrick & Short will continue to operate as a standalone business with founders Adrian Short and Andrew Ulrick staying on as minority shareholders. The existing management team will remain in place.

Adrian Short, founder, director and shareholder of Ulrick & Short, said: “From the first meeting with the Novax team it was clear we had found an organisation and group of people that shared our values and beliefs of how a business should be nurtured and developed.

“With Novax behind the company and team, we will continue to grow and have the best chance of seeing Ulrick & Short reach its full potential.”

The deal, advised by Oghma Partners, is the latest investment by Novax in sustainable food and drink production. It said it hoped to use Ulrick & Short’s position in the speciality ingredients market to capture the long-term secular trends of consumers and food manufacturers shifting towards healthier and more sustainable food alternatives.

Oghma support

Commenting on the acquisition, Pär Warnström, sector manager – food of the future at Novax said: “As a long-term thematic investor and operating partner, we are pleased to offer our enduring commitment to together with the team build and expand Ulrick & Short over the years to come.

“The company illustrates much of what we believe are hallmarks of an exceptional business in a promising market – a strong and experienced management team, a competitive leading niche position with a demonstrated strength in its business model, and decades of experience and expertise under the hood.

“At Novax, we remain determined to take an active part in driving the food industry forward with innovation, health and sustainability in focus. We look forward to together with Adrian and the team grow Ulrick & Short and continue on this mission.”

Novax’s acquisition of Ulrick & Short is the latest in Oghma’s expanding list of successful cross-border transactions in the ingredients sector.

Other recent ingredient deals have included advising Solina Group on acquiring UK-based Bowman Ingredients and Givaudan S.A. on divesting its pectin business to Herbstreith & Fox and its processed and grated cheese business.

Ingredients deal success

Mark Lynch, partner at Oghma Partners, said: “We were delighted to have the opportunity to work with Novax on this ingredients acquisition which further strengthens our industry leading track record in this important and exciting sub-sector of the food space. This transaction marks the completion of our sixth deal in the last 12 months.’’

Ulrick & Short supplies clean label ingredients to some of the biggest names in food and drink manufacturing for use in sectors including bakery, meat, dairy, soups and sauces.

The company’s headquarters is at Pontefract in Wakefield, West Yorkshire and it has a team of dedicated food technologists in the UK and the Netherlands.

Meanwhile, Vibrant Foods has acquired Everest Dairies​ as it continues to boosts its reach into the chilled groceries market.

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