Louis Vuitton’s billionaire boss in posh pet food sale

Pet food company backed by Louis Vuitton boss could sell in deal worth hundreds of millions of pounds

A pet food company backed by the billionaire boss of the Louis Vuitton empire could change hands later this year in a deal worth hundreds of millions of pounds. 

City sources said Yorkshire-based Inspired Pet Nutrition (IPN), whose brands include upmarket label Harringtons, has appointed financiers from Harris Williams to work on a ‘strategic review’, which could lead to a sale of the business. 

IPN investors include L Catterton – a private equity firm backed by Bernard Arnault, the French chief executive and chairman of LVMH – which bought into the family firm in 2015. 

Spoils: Dog lovers are spending more on treats, making pet food firms more profitable

Arnault is said to be worth over £60billion, making him the third richest person in the world, according to Forbes. 

Any sale would likely lead to a big payday for L Catterton, whose other investments include the Ole & Steen bakery chain and Cholula hot sauce. 

IPN has been built up from an animal feed mill in the 1920s to a prestigious pet food company, whose brands include Wagg, making operating profits of £12million on sales approaching £100million. 

With Britons spending more on better quality food for their pets, there has been a spate of dealmaking in the sector. 

Earlier this year Swiss giant Nestle bought cat and dog foods firm Lily’s Kitchen, which was also backed by L Catterton. 

Devon-based Forthglade, which boasts ‘100 per cent natural’ pet food, has appointed bankers from Houlihan Lokey to find a buyer. 

IPN and Harris Williams declined to comment.

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