JJ Foodservice Peeled Prawns

JJ Foodservice peeled prawns are part of the new line, together with King Coconut milk and Thai Majestic jasmine rice

JJ Foodservice has acquired specialist Asian food wholesaler Gatelands Supplies for an undisclosed sum.

The national foodservice operator said it had bought Gatelands to strengthen its offer for the fast-growing Asian restaurant scene.

Gatelands is based in Leyton, east London, and has been in operation since 2002.

It specialises in Thai, Chinese and Japanese goods, including exclusive brands now acquired by the JJ portfolio such as Thai Majestic and King Coconut, alongside fresh lines including Japanese eggplant, banana leaves, and a variety of fresh meats. 

Gatelands employed 25 people, all of whom were offered positions at JJ Foodservice with 18 taking up the offer. Staff are currently being intergrated into JJ’s Enfield depot.

As part of the deal, the Leyton site is set to close.

Gatelands currently services between 300 and 500 businesses across London and the south east.

JJ said the move would see the addition of 300 Asian products to its overall core range of 3,000 products.

The deal follows JJ’s launch of microsites divided by sector in March. The Asian World Foods site already features 150 items.

The national wholesaler also plans to expand its product range by 50% across all sectors, as part of a wider strategy to provide more variety to more customers.

“We are aiming to bring hundreds of new product lines to cater for the authentic Thai, Chinese and Japanese foodservice clientele,” said JJ Foodservice COO Kaan Hendekli.

“We are focusing on new markets at the moment. We are very strong in a few sectors including Fish & Chip restaurants, Indian, and Mediterranean, but we lack range and knowledge for new markets, and Thai is one of them.

“We want to be a one-stop solution for clients, and we need Gatelands’ expertise and know-how on specialist lines, such as particular types of rice, prawn, or sauces.”

Gatelands Supplies CEO Christopher Christofi said: “With over 35 years of experience in the hospitality sector, JJ Foodservice stands as a prominent industry leader.

“Strategically situated across 12 locations, its expanded infrastructure means our customers will benefit from local collection, fast deliveries, and an extensive product range.”

The deal could prove a template for further acquisitions or partnerships, suggested the foodservice giant.

“We welcome any interested parties to reach out and explore potential collaborations,” said JJ chief sales officer Baris Kacar.