Wednesday, May 29, 2024

Nottingham group acquires online retailer

Huddled Group plc, the Nottingham-based business focused on building a portfolio of e-commerce brands, has acquired online retailer Food Circle Supermarket for up to £300,000.

The acquisition comprises the entire stock, intellectual property and website and other social channels of Food Circle.

Founded in 2018, by owner/operators Paul Simpson and James Barthorpe, Sheffield-based Food Circle is an online, direct-to-consumer retailer specialising in discounted foods for healthy and specialised diets such as high-protein and energy products.

Food Circle serves customers across the UK and has become a trusted partner for well-known brands within this market, including Huel, Nakd, Grenade and Optimum Nutrition, amongst others.

Food Circle delivers an average of 3,000 orders per month, with an average order value of £40. The business has seen strong growth since inception and delivered unaudited revenue of £1.4m and a small net loss of £46k for the year ended 31 December 2023.

With access to additional funds to grow its range and other expected synergies as a result of becoming part of Huddled Group, the Board believes that Food Circle can be grown significantly. Paul Simpson and James Barthorpe will continue in their current roles and will be supported to grow the business.

Martin Higginson, Chief Executive Officer of Huddled Group PLC, said: “We’re delighted to announce this exciting opportunity to further strengthen our position in the online surplus food and drink market, alongside our existing brand, Discount Dragon.

“Food Circle is positioned at the intersection of a number of market trends; the continued search for value among consumers, the demand for e-commerce and direct delivery services, and the growth in health and nutrition products to support active lifestyles.

“It has developed important relationships with brands for whom responsible disposal of surplus stocks remains a priority and this will remain a core mission for Food Circle.

“Paul and James have done an amazing job growing the business to a turnover of £1.4m with very limited capital and therefore range. We are convinced given access to additional funds the pair will quickly grow this business to new heights.”

Paul Simpson and James Barthorpe, Founders of Food Circle, said: “We are delighted that Food Circle is joining the Huddled Group plc family. We have worked hard to build our business from the ground up since our formation in 2018, and feel that now is the ideal time to join a growing group with exciting ambitions for the future.

“We believe that Huddled Group plc is the perfect partner to help us unlock the huge potential of Food Circle.

“The business is positioned in a rapidly growing market, and we are confident that this acquisition will enable us to build on the work we have done so far in helping brands to reduce waste, while maintaining their brand equity, and offering consumers access to high quality products at competitive prices.”

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