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Samworth Brothers acquires Soreen

Samworth Brothers has bought malt loaf brand Soreen, its first takeover in 28 years. The Melton company owns the Ginsters pasty and Dickinson & Morris pork pie brands.

Gibbs Croft, part of the Samworth group, purchased the brand and its bakery, in Trafford Park, Manchester, from McCambridge Group, of Lancashire.

Soreen, which employs 125 staff, was created in 1939 and has recently expanded its product range to include new flavours and other breakfast products.

It is Samworth's first takeover since it acquired pie maker Walker & Son – the business set up by Walkers crisps founder Henry Walker – in 1986.

Lindsey Pownall, Samworth chief executive, said: "Soreen is a quality brand with a long heritage so it fits well with our business approach and product portfolio."

Paul Tripp, managing director of Soreen, added: "Soreen is an iconic brand. This marks an exciting step in Soreen's development."

Samworth produces pork pies, sandwiches, ready meals, desserts and cakes for major supermarkets, including Marks & Spencer, Morrisons, Waitrose and Tesco.

The group, one of the UK's largest chilled food producers, has eight factories in Leicestershire and has invested £137million in the business during the past five years.

Samworth, which can trace its history back to 1896, employs 7300 people, including about 5000 in the county. It made a pre-tax profit of £41.4million in the year to 29 December 2012 from sales of £767.2m.

Date: 19 February 2014