Chinese company takes over British barbecue firm Outback

UK barbecue brand Outback is predicting "a bright future" after a takeover by China-based TPA, announcing a new distribution agreement with partners Unipart Leisure and Marine, and a year-on-year sales increase of 18 per cent for 2010.

The family-owned Outback business started in 1979 and was run from its Maidstone, Kent, base by founder Eric Hopper's daughter Julie Channer, who sold her remaining shares after a financial deal was offered by long-standing manufacturer and majority shareholder TPA Metals and Machinery (Shenzhen).

Outback UK chief executive Mark Osborne said:

"Julie and her co-directors decided the time was right to sell the business after many years as establishing it as a first-choice brand among consumers buying from garden centres, major DIY outlets and supermarkets. It's all change for 2011, with new offices, new distribution and new products.

"TPA, which has a leading worldwide reputation and market for its barbeques, key gas and valve regulators, cylinders, heaters and camper appliances, is a natural partner to ensure a bright future for the Outback brand.

"With sales increasing, and a greater number of consumers seeing the lifestyle and household economy benefits of lighting-up an Outback barbeque, we plan to add even more marketing trade value to the brand in the year ahead".

TPA, with 1,200 employees and an $80 million turnover, is recognized as a leading global manufacturer in the liquid petroleum gas (LPG) industry for domestic and commercial appliances, counting among its customers Calor, Shell and BP.

"We have had a successful and long-standing relationship in working alongside Outback from original design to final barbeque shipment, and look forward to developing a business that has a proven track record for growth among UK customers", said TPA chief executive Victor Lin.

Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Sign up now
Already registered?
Sign in

Before commenting please read our rules for commenting on articles.

If you see a comment you find offensive, you can flag it as inappropriate. In the top right-hand corner of an individual comment, you will see 'flag as inappropriate'. Clicking this prompts us to review the comment. For further information see our rules for commenting on articles.

comments powered by Disqus

Read These Next

Garden centre and nursery experiences: the next big trend in 2018?

Garden centre and nursery experiences: the next big trend in 2018?

Reports say today's shoppers are as keen to take in "experiences" as they are to shop - and garden centres say they are well-placed to take in the trend.

Business Planning - Staff are your greatest asset

Business Planning - Staff are your greatest asset

An effective strategy to retain staff is the best way for any business to avoid a potential recruitment crisis, Neville Stein advises.

What benefits can buying an extra garden centre bring to retail owners?

What benefits can buying an extra garden centre bring to retail owners?

More garden centres are adding an extra location to their offer - Coolings in Kent being the most recent example of the trend. But why are they doing it - and what are the benefits?

Follow us on:
  • Facebook
  • LinkedIn
  • Twitter
  • Google +
Horticulture Jobs
More Horticulture Jobs

Horticulture Week Top 100 GARDEN CENTRES 2017

See our exclusive ranking of garden centre performance by annual turnover. 

Garden Centre Prices

Peter Seabrook

Inspiration and insight from travels around the horticultural world

Read more Peter Seabrook articles

Neville Stein

Business advice from Neville Stein, MD of business consultancy Ovation

Read latest articles