Soreen has diversified into different meal occasions

McCambridge is preparing to put malt loaf brand Soreen up for sale, The Grocer understands.

McCambridge - which is backed by Barclays Ventures - has appointed corporate finance adviser Catalyst to handle a sale, according to City sources.

Soreen is one of the fastest-growing brands in the cake category, with value up 9.9% to £48m on volumes up 11.8% [IRI 52w/e 10 August 2013].

It has benefited from the launch of a series of new products over the past two years and focused on different meals with products such as the Fruity Five Loaf for breakfast and Banana Lunchbox Loaves.

It had also scaled back promotional activity - steering away from multibuy deals, Soreen MD Paul Tripp told The Grocer earlier this year.

One leading finance chief said the brand was likely to attract interest from trade buyers looking to diversify their bakery offer such as Associated British Foods.

Last December, McCambridge sold its own-label cake division to NBGI Private Equity for an undisclosed sum. It had sold factories in Oldham and Heywood in an effort to become more efficient in the run-up to the sale.

Group turnover fell 2.2% to £113m in the year to 30 June 2012, but EBITDA increased by a quarter to £10.7m, according to the latest accounts filed at Companies House. In the accounts, the company said it spent £17.4m on capex in 2010 and 2011 funding the factory.

McCambridge and Catalyst declined to comment.