Uxbridge: Woods Foodservice agrees EMC refinancing deal to boost growth

Woods Foodservice, the award-winning supplier of ingredients to many of London’s leading restaurants, has concluded a multi-million-pound refinancing deal with the help of EMC Corporate Finance.

It follows a four-year period of unprecedented growth which has seen the Uxbridge-based company’s turnover soar, a move to a large new warehouse and a doubling in the size of its distinctive fleet of vans.

EMC’s Terry Rainback, who has worked with Woods Foodservice throughout this period, said: “Having a sound and reliable financial structure to support the company’s continued growth was important to ensure that MD Darren Labbett and the team could move forward with confidence to achieve their exciting plans.

“The new banking facilities and services, established with Barclays Bank, are structured to provide the support and financial relationship that the business needs to power even more growth.”

Woods Foodservice supplies ingredients to restaurants, hotels, pubs and bars in Central London and within the M25 and has many of the capital’s Michelin star chefs as customers. It has won the coveted Chefs’ Choice and Readers’ Choice Awards every year since 2015.

In 2016 Woods moved from its original Southall base to a brand new 27,000 sq ft warehouse in Uxbridge with offices, chillers, freezers and racked storage, a fully-fitted demo kitchen, and ample space to accommodate its continuing expansion plans. These have included the commissioning of a massive new freezer unit to double capacity in time for the 2018 Christmas season.  

Darren Labbett commented: “I always knew that we had a winning formula at Woods, but at times we were at risk of becoming a victim of our own success. In one year, we exceeded budgeted sales by nearly 50% which is when some bold decisions had to be made, and the big move was on.

“I like to be ahead of the curve at Woods in all respects, and planning and preparation were key to what we have been able to achieve. EMC’s Terry Rainback has been with us throughout the four-year journey and, as an owner-manager, it was great to have somebody else around when you needed them.”