Ex-Booker CEO Wilson takes Menzies Distribution stake

Menzies Distribution announced that former Booker CEO Charles Wilson has acquired a “significant minority shareholding” in the company and has joined the board as a non-executive director with immediate effect.

Private equity fund Endless LLP bought Menzies Distribution from Edinburgh-based global aviation services business John Menzies plc in 2018 for an enterprise value of £74.5 million.

“Charles is a highly respected figure in the food retailing industry, having retired earlier this year as CEO of Booker after 15 years at the helm, including after the company’s merger with Tesco in 2018,” said Menzies Distribution.

“His investment in Menzies will represent approximately 10% of the company’s share capital.

“The development accelerates the significant momentum already seen in Menzies’ journey over recent months.

“In January 2021, former Asda CEO Andy Clarke was appointed as non-executive chairman.

“In December 2020, Menzies sealed a transformational deal combining two of the UK’s major logistics businesses.

“It acquired Bibby Distribution from the 213-year old, family owned Bibby Line Group, unlocking geographic potential for Menzies while adding 38 new operating sites and a large, young fleet to the well-established and successful Menzies platform.”

Clarke said: “Menzies is a great British brand and we are making excellent progress on our journey of growth and diversification.

“I am delighted to welcome Charles Wilson to the board as a non-executive director and significant shareholder.”

Menzies Distribution CEO Greg Michael said: “Charles Wilson joining Menzies is a fantastic endorsement of our strategy to be the partner of choice to the publishing and retail markets.

“The team is very excited to be working with Charles to accelerate customer growth opportunities.

“We are looking forward to the insight that Charles will bring to support our ambitions through our unique set of services and capabilities.”

Endless partner Aidan Robson said: “We are very pleased to welcome Charles to the Menzies board and alongside us as an investor.

“The business continues to go from strength to strength and the acquisition of Bibby Distribution at the end of last year, coupled with recent highly relevant non-executive appointments, provide a great platform for the further growth and diversification of the Menzies group.”