Vertas Group has completed the acquisition of Churchill Catering in a deal which sees it become a national contract catering provider as it takes its operations into Scotland, northern England and down to Kent and Surrey.
To date Vertas’ food proposition has primarily focused on the education sector, with 40,000 meals prepared daily for school children and college students across East Anglia.
The merger with Churchill Catering sees Vertas moving into the commercial and leisure market across 50 UK sites, including Forestry Commission sites such as Go Ape in Thetford, and the headquarters of Church’s footwear, Forestry Commission Scotland and Cambridgeshire, Bedfordshire and Hertfordshire Police.
After 22 years running the Bury St Edmunds-based business Churchill Catering’s Tony Nicholl is retiring and his son Stuart will continue to run the operations. The 350 Churchill staff employed across England and Scotland will remain with the company.
Tony Nicholl, Managing Director, Churchill Catering, commented: “Vertas is a business with a strong team which will add to the depth of our business offer including purchasing and resource planning. From clients’ perspectives nothing will change. The rest of the Churchill Catering team will continue to support the work they do for clients with their usual flair and determination.”
Ian Surtees MBA, Chief Executive Officer at Vertas Group Limited, added:“We are delighted to be part of the longer term strategy of Churchill Catering and will support the superb management team to continue to deliver first class services to customers. The Vertas Group Directors and Senior Management Team are visiting all the new sites over the coming weeks with Stuart Nicholl from Churchill, to introduce ourselves to staff and further understand the needs of the business.”
This is the Vertas Group’s fourth acquisition in 12 months.