The purchase is the ethnic food group’s second in less than a month, having completed the acquisition of paneer maker Everest Dairies in March. Vibrant, created in 2020 by private equity firm Exponent in 2020, also has Cofresh, TRS and East End in its stable.
Fudco, led by brothers Sheilesh and Akhil Shah, employs 68 people across its food arm’s headquarters and factory in Willesden and retail store on Ealing Road, and has remained a family-run business since its foundation in 1979.
The company, which also has a health and beauty arm, distributes 2,500 SKUs, supplying supermarkets and independents with nuts, spices, dried fruits, pulses, speciality flours and other Asian foods. Its brands include Fudco (nuts, spices and other Asian foods), Chai Xpress (ayurvedic, spiced and herbal teas) and Golden Tree (Mediterranean-inspired nuts and seeds).
“Fudco’s story is one we have been following for a long time,” said Rohit Samani, executive chairman of Vibrant Food. “They have sourced fantastic, premier ingredients, and grown the business from a single, family owned shop in London to the country’s fastest-growing premium Asian foods brand.”
The Shah brothers will support the transition of Fudco into the Vibrant Foods network over the coming months, with Sheilesh continuing to steer the company’s health and beauty brands independently.
“Vibrant Foods has shown how they protect and support ambitious family businesses,” said Sheilesh Shah. “I know we’ve found the right partner for our next chapter and I’m very confident Fudco will go on to achieve even greater things. I wish Vibrant and the whole Fudco team the very best.”
Samani added: “We see this new partnership as a powerful new platform for the brand to take its growth to the next level, as we seek to continue its impressive performance across major retailers and local community stores where Fudco is so known and loved.
“Fudco’s community roots are something we want to protect and nurture, and their brand totally resonates with our values across Vibrant Foods. We are excited about how Fudco can contribute to us reaching a bigger audience, championing both health and taste that makes this category so exciting.”
Law firm Stamford Partners acted as financial advisor to Vibrant Foods on this transaction.