Retail Food Group eyes acquisitions

The owner of outlets including Donut King and Michel's Patisserie is raising cash for bolt-on deals.

Retail Food Group Ltd is eyeing two acquisitions for a total of about $37 million at less than $20 million apiece, according to a person familiar with the situation. 

Retail Food Group Ltd, whose divisions include Quick Service Restaurants which owns pizza outlets and other chains including Donut King, Brumby's and Michel's Patisserie, is considering wholesale coffee groups with operations in Australia and New Zealand. Toby's Estate, a NSW based coffee wholesaler, is one possible target.

The company would use the purchases to supply coffee to its own retail businesses and to bolster a growing part of its operations – third-party supply.

The group went into a trading halt on Wednesday, announcing it would rattle the tin for $55 million, including $18 million to fund an additional 15 gourmet pizza stores.

The $37 million balance would be used to fund its acquisitions. But the company gave no further details. 

Last year, RFG bought the New Zealand-based The Coffee Guy Group for $4.36 million.

Media reports have suggested the private-equity backed Retail Zoo is a likely target. But the company is understood to have indicated that Retail Zoo, the owner of Boost Juice and Mex Grill, is simply too big to tackle.

While the suggested target’s retail coffee arm CIBO Espresso would have some appeal for RFG, Boost Juice and Salsa’s Mex Grill are less attractive because they don’t line up with the company’s existing offering.

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