2 Sisters food group owner considers flotation
The millionaire owner of chicken processing giant 2 Sisters – who recently added Harry Ramsden’s to his food empire – has not ruled out taking the West Bromwich firm public.
And Ranjit Boparan has revealed ambitions to grow the company’s turnover to £3 billion by 2015, following the purchase last month of Dutch poultry firm Storteboom Group.
Mr Boparan, who was number 35 on this year’s Birmingham Post Rich List with an estimated fortune of £125 million, said he was open to the possibility of a listing for the Dials Lane group.
“If this made sound business sense then it is something that I would consider in the future,” he said.
The firm has 13 manufacturing sites around the UK, as well as a presence in the Netherlands and in the US - and with the addition of Storteboom, its revenues will be in excess of £1 billion.
Founded by Ranjit and Baljinder Boparan Singh in 1993, 2 Sisters supplies raw and prepared chicken products and counts high street names like Marks & Spencer and Tesco among its clients. It is also known for its Buxted brand chickens.
Mr Boparan said he had plans to increase 2 Sisters’ revenues significantly further in the next five years.
“It is hoped that the acquisition of the Storteboom Group will help 2 Sisters reach a turnover of £3 billion by 2015,” he said.
Mr Boparan has been on something of a spending spree in recent months, buying up high-profile business such as the fish and chip chain Harry Ramsden’s in January and collapsed fish supplier Five Star Fish in April.
Last year he bought FishWorks, a restaurant and fishmonger chain set up by chef Mitch Tonks, out of administration.
Storteboom, the most recent company addition to the Boparan fold subject to the deal getting merger clearance, will add 1,250 staff to the 5,500 people currently employed by 2 Sisters.
Mr Boparan said the secret to his success in being able to continue to buy up firms during a downturn was due to the way he approached management. “I’ve always run the company as though we were in a recession,” he said.
“The three principles that underpin the business are: buy for less, produce for less and sell more for less.
“Our recent acquisitions, Harry Ramsden’s and Fishworks, give us the opportunity to supply customers with exception value, quality and service.”
Although he has talked about taking Harry Ramsden’s to China and India, Mr Boparan said the first task was to focus on the firm’s domestic market.
He expects to add 100 new branches, creating hundreds of new jobs in the next five years.
But in the medium term, he added there was opportunity to “take protein to the four corners of the world.”
“Fish and chips are one of those dishes that cross religions and cultures,” he said.
“We’ve seen many fast food brands from abroad conquer the UK market and we see no reason why British brands can’t be strong here and overseas too.
“Overseas expansion of Harry Ramsden’s is very much a medium-term ambition and we want to get it right here first before moving aboard.
“We’re planning to open a further 100 locations within the next five years and expect to create around 600 new jobs, taking care to ensure that customers are guaranteed the same consistent quality at every single store
“Our intention is to grow the business into a global player and we’d like to take protein to the four corners of the world.”