Snowman Logistics to acquire two food processing startups

Gateway Distriparks' cold chain unit Snowman Logistics Ltd is in advance talks to acquire two Bangalore-based startups specialising in chopping vegetables and putting together sandwiches and burgers before sending them off to quick service restaurants (QSR), as per a report in The Economic Times citing a top company executive.

Ravi Kannan, CEO of Snowman Logistics, did not disclose the names of the target firms or the deal value but said, both the deals will take at least one month to get closed.

This will be the company's first deal after it went public in September last year and would help Snowman enter the fruits and vegetable supply business.

Both the startups run their own processing centres. One of them sources, cleans and chops vegetables, while the other assembles sandwiches, burgers and buns. Snowman has also started a similar processing centre at its warehouse in Hyderabad.

It had raised around Rs 130 crore for setting up new temperature controlled and ambient warehouses and Rs 8 crore for long-term working capital, through its IPO.

Snowman Logistics had made a blockbuster listing on the bourses in September after its IPO was lapped up with the public issue seeing bids worth almost 60 times or recorded around 59x oversubscription. It was the first company to list after the new government took over in May.

It is backed by Norwest Venture Partners, IFC and Faering Capital.

Snowman provides temperature-controlled storage services. As of March 31, 2014, its operations comprised 23 temperature controlled warehouses across 14 locations including Serampore (near Kolkata), Taloja (near Mumbai), Palwal (near Delhi), Mevalurkuppam, (near Chennai) and Bengaluru capable of warehousing 58,543 pallets and 3,000 ambient pallets. It operates over 370 reefer vehicles consisting of 307 leased and 63 owned vehicles and has more than 1,490 employees, including 383 permanent employees and 1,107 on a contract labour basis.

It caters to product segments including dairy products, ice-cream, poultry and meat, sea food, ready-to-eat food products and fruit and vegetables, confectioneries, healthcare and pharmaceutical products as well as industrial products such as x-ray, photo-imaging and films.

(Edited by Joby Puthuparampil Johnson)

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