Unitech Industries today confirmed a deal to acquire the assets of catering and refrigeration supplier Valera, which went into administration last month.
Staffordshire-based Unitech, which has a history of buying distressed businesses, has purchased Valera’s sales information, customer database, service records, telephone numbers and website, as well as its entire stock of spare parts.
The company has also taken over an agreement between Valera and Sanyo that secures the provision of spare parts for Sanyo microwaves for a period of seven years.
Nick Imlah, CEO of Unitech Industries, said it had “beaten off strong competition” to pick up the business, which before its financial troubles had been trading for more than 20 years.
Additionally, Unitech revealed that it was using the acquisition to set up a new business — Corsair Wholesale Ltd incorporating Valera — which will operate from group company Corsair Engineering’s site in Banbury.
The business will be headed up by Valera founder Pratap Gadhvi and have its own dedicated office and warehouse facilities.
Imlah said: “Having succeeded in concluding this deal in the face of strong competition from other interested parties, we see this as a great opportunity to re-launch one of the foodservice sector’s most respected brands.”
Corsair Engineering was Unitech Industries’ first investment in a distributor-focused company and Imlah said that the Valera and Corsair sales teams will “work hand in hand across their over-lapping and non-competing customer base”.
Unitech claims that the “bulk” of Valera’s key suppliers have agreed to support the new venture, ensuring that although technically a fresh start-up there will be a strong and familiar portfolio of brands at its disposal.
“This is an exciting step forward for Valera and we look forward to being part of the hugely successful Unitech Industries Group,” stated Pratap Gadhvi. “It is our intention to affiliate the new business with the main trade associations including CEDA, CEDABOND and the FCSI at the earliest opportunity and I would also like to take this opportunity to thank our suppliers and distributors for their support during this period of change.”