Airedale takes over South Coast Catering

The Airedale Group today bolstered its coverage of the UK market by taking over South Coast Catering UK (SCCUK), the Weymouth-based kitchen services specialist.

South Coast employs 85 staff and has been trading in the commercial kitchen sector since 1991. Although its core business is reactive and planned maintenance services, it has recently diversified into laundry, light equipment and scheme work.

Airedale plans to combine its Technical Services division with South Coast’s maintenance business, creating a 70-strong network of catering engineers.

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South Coast’s founder and managing director, Alex Hooper Greenhill, will remain in his full-time role as a director.

He said this morning that the firm was delighted to become part of Bradford-based Airedale.

“We chose them because they have demonstrated a long-term commitment to this market place and they understand the value of our brand. This is the next step forward for South Coast, our employees, clients and partners. With the support and backing of the Airedale Group we can provide our clients with an even better service.”

Airedale will now operate from six offices throughout the UK, reinforcing its position as one of the largest independent providers of catering installations and services in the UK.

The South Coast brand will sit alongside other brands in the group, including Caterform (manufacturing), Airedale Building Services (Turnkey) and The Design House.

In total, Airedale now employs almost 200 staff, with half of its workforce based in service-related roles.

Rob Bywell, CEO of Airedale, said the firm was excited to be working with “like-minded people” who have built a successful business by focusing on customer satisfaction.

“The combined engineer base will give us great depth of service coverage in every region of the UK, and will allow us to really differentiate in this aspect of our offering. We will continue to invest, build and enhance our capabilities in this area.”

Andrew Bristow, Airedale’s chairman, insists the acquisition comes at a time when the company is set to deliver a “strong performance” this year, with the number of design and build schemes having almost doubled since 2012.

He commented: “Bringing together the strength of Airedale’s project business and South Coast’s service offer will be another step change for the group. Together we will be able to provide a complete kitchen solution for clients on a nationwide basis.”

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