Suttons Seeds owner Vilmorin says brand set to be subject to a management buyout

Vilmorin told analysts and investors on 8 October that its UK-owned brand Suttons Seeds, bought in 1994, will be subject to a management buyout in quarter one, 2015.

Vilmorin chief executive Emmanuel Rougier said Suttons has high brand awareness but sales have declined since 2009, with negative net income of EUR2.4m in 2013-14. The French company's report says mail order and internet sales are "very competitive".

The strategic review comment is that garden products are "not core" to farm grain business Vilmorin's strategy, with limited synergies.

Vilmorin said a management buyout option is being pursued with a local development fund, with a vendor loan from Vilmorin. A deal is signed subject to financing and regulatory approval.

Meanwhile, Suttons is launching a 14-plant James Wong range. Wong's Growing for Taste book is due to be published in March 2015. Suttons also has a revised range of chillies.


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