Abel & Cole begin sale process
An information memorandum is due to be sent out to interested parties in March. Advisers from PwC are on board to manage the sale process. Abel & Cole is estimated to be worth over £30 million in a sale.
Former barrister, Keith Abel set up the business in 1988, and started out in the basement of a house in South East London.
Today, it delivers its vegetable and fruit boxes to over 50,000 homes a week. Other products sold include meat, fish, eggs, and kitchen cupboard items such as condiments, pasta and snacks.
It is thought large supermarkets such as Morrisons and the Co-operative Group – which do not have online sales - may be interested to see the information memorandum for Abel & Cole. Online grocer Ocado is expected to pay close attention to the proceedings.
Phoenix Equity Partners bought the delivery business in October 2007 for £40 million from Mr Abel. The business then started to flag and in early 2010 was put into a debt-for-equity swap with its lender Lloyds Banking Group.
Mr Abel came back and turned the firm back around to profits two years ago. Revenues for Abel & Cole for the year ending 31 August 2011 rose by 25 per cent to £35.74 million.
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