Vibrant Foods, the ethnic foods platform comprising the TRS Foods and East End Foods brands which was recently established by Exponent Private Equity, has acquired Cofresh Snack Foods (CSF) for an undisclosed sum.

CSF joins a growing portfolio of sector brands at Vibrant Foods’, a producer and distributor of South Asian ethnic foods in the UK and across continental Europe.

Vibrant Foods is a new foods platform seeking to unlock significant growth potential within the expanding ethnic foods and healthy snacking market, as health-conscious consumers look to consume more plant-based protein, including chickpeas, lentils and other pulses.

CSF is made up of two key brands; Cofresh, an Indian snack brand in the UK which manufactures over 200 traditional Indian savoury products, and Eat Real, the healthy snacking company and  ‘Free-From’ snacking brand in the UK, whose products of lentil, hummus and quinoa chips focus on the free-from allergens category. As of 2019, CSF had retail sales c. £75m.

Commenting on the acquisition, Priyesh Patel, shareholder and managing director of Cofresh Snack Foods, said: “Becoming part of Vibrant Foods is opening up an exciting new chapter in our history. There are tremendous growth opportunities for our sector, as popularity for both ethnic and healthy snacking products continues to grow. Our products are well-established in both markets, thanks to the tireless work of our employees and founders, whom I’d like to thank for their support and commitment to excellent customer experience, alongside our global suppliers and customers in the UK and abroad. Being part of a dynamic food group will allow us to accelerate our growth trajectory, maintaining and building our market-leading product offering, and helping us penetrate new markets and distribution channels.”

Rohit Samani, chairman of Vibrant Foods, said: “We are very pleased to welcome Cofresh Snack Foods to Vibrant Foods. Its broad range of authentic and high-quality snacks complements our existing product offering of South Asian staples, and further cements our position as one of the leading South Asian foods producer in Europe. The Eat Real brand provides us with a bridgehead into a customer base of health-conscious mainstream consumers, for whom our broad range of pulses is an ideal source of plant-based protein.”

Simon Davidson, partner at Exponent, commented: “The underlying fundamentals for the broader Free-From category are very positive, and snacks are the largest contributor to this sector. Bagged snacks, in particular, have been growing strongly, and as such Eat Real – the number one player – is positioning us in an exciting segment of the market. We look forward to working with CSF and Vibrant Foods’ management teams to realise the full potential of both brands.”