Premier Foods seeks out new bread investor

 
Kasmira Jefford
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PREMIER Foods has hired advisers to review options for its troubled bread division, including a possible sale.

The owner of Hovis and Mother’s Pride bread has asked financial advisory firm Ondra Partners to explore options including attracting a new investor, a source confirmed last night.

Premier Foods’ bread business, which also produces own-label ranges for some of Britain's supermarkets, has undergone a major restructuring this year after losing a number of contracts, including one with the Co-op.

The group is closing three bakeries and two mills and changing its logistics network at a cost of 900 workers and £28m for the full year.

In October the group’s chief executive, Gavin Darby, said he had no plans to sell the Hovis business outright, and was focused on expanding it. However, there has been speculation around the future of the bread unit since last year.

Darby is understood to have already approached a string of private equity groups about the sale of a stake in the business, Sky News said last night.

The company declined to comment.