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Ardian acquires majority stake in Irca Group

14 July 2015  •  Author(s): Victoria White

Ardian has acquired a majority stake in Irca Group, a leading European provider of ingredients and base food products for pastry-making, baking and ice-cream retailing.


Founded in 1919 by Nobili family, Irca is a leading Italian and European B2B manufacturer of semi-finished products for the pastry, bakery and horeca market thanks to a portfolio products composed by more than 700 SKUs offered to industrial clients, internal bakeries of hypermarkets and pastry and bakery shops. In 2014 it had a turnover of more than €200 million (+12% year-on-year since 2013) and has now achieved a leading position in the various segments of the pastry-making industry. This is thanks to its unique product portfolio offering, which includes 700 references that have been developed with Irca’s manufacturing expertise and internal R&D activities. The Company also provides products for the ice-cream industry through the brand Joy Gelato.

IRCA has approximately 250 employees and three production plants near Varese (Lombardy). Its product portfolio of base food products ranges from chocolate to powder mixes, creams and jams. In 2013, Irca started to produce bases, pastes and covertures for ice cream shops, a business that has experienced significant growth in revenues of 50%, both domestically and abroad, with more than 200 references.

Ardian intends to help Irca strength its market position at an international level

Philippe Poletti, Member of the Executive Committee and Head of Mid Cap Buyout at Ardian, said, “Irca is an internationally recognised business with a strong position in the food sector. This is thanks to its Made in Italy quality. With its consolidated position in the industry, strong research team and product innovation abilities, it has excellent growth potential in an increasingly demanding market. Ardian intends to contribute to the further development of Irca, helping it to strengthen its leading market position at an international level. We will consider added growth opportunities through alternative lines, whilst staying true to the company’s identity and traditions.”

Roberto Nobili, Irca General Manager, added, “Ardian’s investment in Irca marks an important stage in the future development of the company. We are excited to embark on this new partnership together, one that will allow the company to achieve the ambitious goals that it has set for itself, not only in Italy but also at an international level.”

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