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Planters Garden Centre expands with 1.6m acquisition

A STAFFORDSHIRE-based garden centre has expanded its operation with the acquisition of a county rival in a deal worth £1.6m.

Planters Garden Centre in Tamworth has purchased Stafford’s Bradley Nursery and Garden Centre with the aid of financing from NatWest.

Gerald Ingram, director at the family-run Planters Garden Centre said: “We like the strategic fit of Bradleys. Over 21 years we have constantly developed and invested in Tamworth and today we run one of the West Midlands largest independent garden centres.

“Bradleys is also a family operation so we share a similar ethos to gardening and customer service. The acquisition extends our footprint and allows us to develop further for the future from a stronger operational base.”

The Midlands structured finance team at NatWest advanced Planters £1.6m to complete the acquisition and to support ongoing investment into the Bradley operation.

Nic Hanlon, director, structured finance at NatWest, said: “The management team at Planters have a proven track record of running a successful garden centre. They will now benefit from the resulting economies of scale and additional revenue lines, as they seek to grow the business.”

Planters, designated as a ‘Garden Centre of Excellence’ by the Garden Centre Association, has recently extended its facilities, which now include an aquatic centre, a pet centre and a restaurant which seats up to 180 serving traditional good quality local produce. Alongside its physical presence, since 2006 the centre has operated a successful Seeds by Post online business which delivers seeds direct from the centre to customer’s homes.

Bradley Nursery and Garden Centre is a retailer of plants, garden furniture and barbecues. It began life as a nursery selling plants grown on site and today houses a pet shop and an onsite restaurant.

Following the acquisition the centre will be renamed as Garden King Bradley. It will be the fourth garden centre in the Planters portfolio. It also has a centre in Swadlincote operating under the Garden King brand, as well as an outlet at Bretby in Staffordshire, which is also a Planters unit.

Source : Duncan Tift – The Business Desk - West Midlands

14 December 2011
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