Baring Asia acquires 40% stake in Weetabix

Visual from the Weetabix website

Hong Kong-based Baring Private Equity Asia (Baring Asia) has acquired a 40 per cent stake in the UK-based manufacturer of cereals and cereal bars, Weetabix Food Company (Weetabix). Financial terms of the transaction were undisclosed.

Commenting on the investment, Giles Turrell, CEO, Weetabix, said, “We are an established leader in the UK breakfast cereal market with an aim to become a globally recognised brand. With continued backing from Bright Food and this investment from Baring Asia, we now have an even greater opportunity to strengthen and expand the Weetabix brand internationally.”

The acquisition comes in advance of Weetabix targeting further expansion in the Greater China market. As part of this growth strategy, Baring Asia will be partnering with Bright Food, the controlling shareholder of Weetabix – a major state-owned food manufacturing firm in China – to grow the Weetabix business in China.

Yongjie Lv, the chairman of Bright Food Group, was optimistic about the partnership with Baring Asia in growing the China footprint of Weetabix’s, as well as the mindshare of its brand portfolio among Chinese consumers.

Lv stated: “We are delighted to be working with Baring Asia to execute on this strategy, benefitting from their sector experience in food and beverage, strong credentials in helping companies execute cross-border growth strategies, pan-Asia network and hands-on operational experience.”

The largest breakfast cereal brand in the United Kingdom (UK) with a global footprint spanning 87 countries across Asia, Europe, the Middle East, North America and Africa, Weetabix includes the Weetabix, Alpen, Ready-brek, Weetos, Oatibix and Alpen cereal bars as part of its family of brands.

Jean Eric Salata, founder and CEO of Baring Asia, commented, “Weetabix is an established and profitable brand in the UK, and is well positioned to take advantage of the strong consumer demand in China for high-quality and nutritious food products. We look forward to partnering with Bright Food, one of the largest food and beverage manufacturing companies in China and its vast nationwide distribution  network, to expand Weetabix in China.”

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Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.