West Cornwall Pasty Company is one of the most recognised food-to-go brands in the British travel and leisure sectors. Selling authentic Cornish Pasties made in Penryn, in Western Cornwall, the business has a focus on selling products made from the very best ingredients, be it Fairtrade Coffee from Brazil, or the British sourced meat and vegetables that go into the pasties. This has been rewarded by successive World Pasty Championship wins.
Despite the popularity of the brand, the business faced an uncertain situation in 2014 caused by the introduction of the “pasty tax”, which adversely affected profitability, and the impact of a mismanaged store roll-out strategy. Enact & Endless saw value in the underlying business proposition, highly identifiable brand and quality “Made in Cornwall” product.
Building on the Endless reputation for speed of transaction and delivery and following the appointment of administrators, Enact & Endless brought stability to the business acquiring 35 outlets and securing 200 jobs. The acquisition of West Cornwall Pasty Company, the first investment from Enact Fund I, was completed in April 2014. Since that time the management team, led by Executive Chairman Chris Peck, have taken the business from strength to strength – quadrupling profitability, extending the product offering and undertaking a major overhaul of the brand.
The business, which now operates across a much wider range of travel and high street locations and has flagship trading partners such as Moto and the RFU, was sold to the Samworth Brothers group in December 2016 in a transaction which saw the Company find a long term home following a successful turnaround over a two and half year period.
This exit marked the first realisation by the Enact Fund and saw a 5.5x return to Investors.