THE maker of Benecol today unveiled plans to acquire snack food firm Glisten in a deal valuing the UK company at around £19.8 million.
Finnish food group Raisio - known in the UK for its Benecol range that claims to help reduce cholesterol - said the offer for Leeds-based Glisten represented a "first and important step" in its international expansion.
Glisten makes cereal, fruit snack bars and health bars and holds the UK rights to make SunMaid raisins and Weightwatchers products.
The offer has been backed by the UK company’s board but still requires the support of Glisten shareholders.
Chief executive Paul Simmonds and finance director Robert Davies will remain at Glisten and hold a 15% stake in the newly-formed company following the proposed takeover, which comes after a difficult time for the firm.
It recently revealed a 49% plunge in underlying annual profits in the wake of challenging trading and accounting errors in one of its fruit and cereal businesses.
Raisio said it had no current plans to make changes to Glisten’s existing sites following the deal.
Glisten employs around 650 people across its Leeds head office and eight manufacturing sites in the UK - at Blackburn, Skegness, North Wales, Newport, Liphook in Hampshire, Swindon, London and Bolton.