Burton’s and Fox’s combined this year to become one business, Fox’s Burton’s Companies UK, following the Ferrero takeover

Burton’s Biscuits has increased its category share in 2021, but growth slowed from heights recorded during the early stages of the pandemic.

Revenues climbed 7.4% to £295.2m in the 53 weeks to 31 December 2021 – compared with 11.5% in 2020 – thanks to the expansion of its private label business and successful branded NPD, as well as some price increases.

Export growth also helped, with an 18% rise in sales overseas. The UK generated revenues of £261.3m, up 2.4% year on year, while Europe increased 15% to £28m, North America nudged up from £1.3m to £1.4m and rest of world jumped from £1.2m to £4.5m.

The maker of Jammie Dodgers, Wagon Wheels, Maryland cookies and other sweet and savoury products under license from Mars and Cathedral City combined with Fox’s Biscuits last year following a £300m takeover by a Ferrero-related company.

Burton’s cemented its position as second largest sweet and savoury biscuit maker in the UK in 2021, with overall share growing from 10.1% to 10.3%, while its share of branded sweet biscuits remained at 5.4%.

Gross profit margins declined by 0.5% due to inflation across raw materials, which was offset by cost control and efficiency.

However, the strong top-line growth drove an £1.1m increase in EBITDA to £24.8m. Exceptional costs of £16.1m related to the acquisition by a Ferrero-related company pushed Burton’s from operating profits of £3.9m to losses of £9.7m, with pre-tax losses extending from £2.1m to £14.7m.

Robin Norton, head of category insight as Fox’s Burton’s, said: “Against a backdrop of economic instability, the company performance has been encouraging as we have further strengthened our position as a leading UK biscuit manufacturer.”

He added there was the “strong performance” was led by the Maryland and Jammie Dodgers brands, alongside the successful branded and retailer brand partnership business.”

Fox’s and Burton’s combined to become one business in March this year, led by Burton’s MD Simon Browne.

“We are delighted to have integrated with Fox’s Biscuits, under Fox’s Burton’s Companies UK led by CEO Simon Browne,” Norton added. “Bringing together these two businesses that share the same passion for crafting British biscuits with care, quality and innovation provides us with strong future growth opportunities.”