Cranswick announces purchase of Dunbia’s pork processing business in Ballymena

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Cranswick, a leading UK food producer, has announced that it has acquired Dunbia’s pork processing business in Ballymena.

Dunbia Ballymena is a leading Northern Irish pork processing business which currently employs 360 people and processes around 7,800 UK farm assured pigs each week. This acquisition enhances Cranswick’s pig processing capability and establishes a significant presence in Northern Ireland.

Dunbia Ballymena operates from a modern, purpose built facility in Country Antrim, Northern Ireland and has a strategic, well-established supply chain with strong links to the local farming community. In the year to 29 March 2016 revenues were £72.4m. Jack Dobson, Executive Director of Dunbia Limited, will support Ballymena in a consultancy capacity to help ensure a smooth transition. The transaction will be funded from Cranswick’s existing debt facilities and is expected to be earnings neutral in the current financial year and earnings enhancing in FY18.

Adam Couch, CEO of Cranswick, commented: “I am delighted to announce the acquisition of Dunbia’s Ballymena pork processing business. This acquisition strengthens our UK pork processing business and provides us with greater control over our supply chain, ensuring that we can maintain the production and processing of high quality, UK farm assured, pigs which is central to our customer’s requirements.

“The management at Ballymena have created long lasting and sustained supply chain relationships and we look forward to building on this and continuing to invest in the facilities, and the team, over the years ahead. We welcome Jack and the team at Ballymena to Cranswick and look forward to working with them to develop the business further.”

Commenting on the announcement Jim Dobson, Dunbia Group Chief Executive, said: “Dunbia Ballymena has been a very successful part of the Dunbia Group and has worked tirelessly to create positive expansion opportunities and a sustainable supply chain for Northern Ireland’s pig producers and the wider agri-food supply sector.

“Last year we became the first company in Northern Ireland to export pork products to India, and we have also been working closely with DAERA and the Chinese government to secure access to China as an important new market. Cranswick specialises in pork production and has the scale and growth potential to continue this work, which is a natural fit for its business.

“Dunbia is pleased to welcome the investment of a major UK PLC into the Northern Ireland economy and we wish them every success. The wider Dunbia business is unaffected and will continue as normal.”