Compass Group PLC, world’s leading food services company with operations across 50 countries, has acquired two Indian firms – New Delhi-based Vipul Facility Management Pvt Ltd and Hyderabad-based Ultimate Hospitality Services Pvt Ltd. The amount of acquisition was not disclosed.

Following these acquisitions, the group will now cater to customer across 44 Indian cities. The company serves core sectors such as business & industry, defence, healthcare, education and sports & leisure, with an established brand portfolio. It had generated annual revenues of over £14.5 billion as of Sept 30, 2010.

While VFM is a key national player in the support services industry, UHS happens to be a well-positioned regional food services business. Together, they will provide a strong platform to ensure further development of the group within the country.

Akasam consulting private limited, a boutique investment bank acted as sole advisors for  Ultimate Hospitalities, Hyderabad. 

Commenting on the acquisitions, Mr Andy Furlong, group managing director (Central & South East Asia, Middle East Africa China & India) said, “We are delighted with these acquisitions. UHS gives us a substantial foothold into the Andhra Pradesh market and VFM brings considerable experience and expertise in the support services industry. The addition of these businesses further strengthens our ability to offer clients a broader range of food and support services across India.”

Compass, Listed on the London Stock Exchange, Compass earlier had a presence in India through a joint venture with Radhakrishna Hospitality Services Group, which it got through its acquisition of the Accor group unit Eurest in mid-90s. This JV ended in 2008 with Radhakrishna buying Compass' stake as the latter wanted control in the company. Radhakrishna Hospitality was then acquired by French food services giant Sodexo for $100 million in March, 2009. In 2010, the group re-entered India with the acquisition of Pune-based Tirumala Hospitality Services Pvt Ltd.

Within the retail space, the organised food sector estimated at $200 billion (in FY 2007) is expected to reach $300 billion by 2015, growing at a compounded annual growth rate of 6 per cent over the seven-year period. It also represents the second highest component in consumer discretionary spending, according to market research reports.


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