P3P acquires UK’s largest tomato grower, APS Group

P3P Partners group (“P3P”) has acquired an 80% interest in Cheshire-based A Pearson Holdings Limited (“APS”), grower of over 500 million tomatoes a year in the UK and will provide working capital and growth funding to the APS group.

The Pearson family will retain a 20% interest in the APS business going forward. This transaction provides the APS business with access to additional funding to further grow and develop into other fresh produce areas. 

The management team at APS, led by Mark Pearson as CEO, will continue to run the business on a day-to-day basis.  Paul Allen has joined the business as Executive Chairman to enhance the growth plans of the business, and David Hoult has recently been appointed as group CFO.

“We are thrilled to work with APS and build upon the rapid growth it has achieved, which has seen turnover rise from c.£7m in 2006 to over £100m in 2022. Food security is a critical issue for the UK, and APS plays a vital part in growing British fresh produce sustainably. This investment adds to P3P’s strong track record in the food, agritech and sustainable energy sectors. We look forward to supporting the management team in the future development of the company.”

“Being part of a family-run business meant I was keen to ensure we found the right partner to take the company to the next level, and I’m confident we have achieved this with P3P. This is an exciting next step for the business, and we look forward to the future with confidence and enthusiasm. It’s very much business as usual for everyone involved in APS and these recent changes will help us to strengthen the excellent services and produce we provide to our customers.”

“APS currently grows a third of all British tomatoes and is in a strong position to meet the rising demand by consumers. I am looking forward to helping strengthen their position as the UK’s leading supplier of tomatoes and grow its position as suppliers of other fresh produce. The partnership and investment with P3P will help us to strengthen the already excellent APS brand and support plans for new areas of growth.”

About APS

APS was established in 1949 as A Pearson & Sons. Today the business employs 750 people and operates across seven locations across Cheshire, Kent, Isle of Wight, West Sussex and the North East consisting of 70.4 hectares of glasshouse and 80,000 square feet of packing facilities and head office in Chichester.

About P3P Partners

P3P is an experienced energy, waste, agritech and horticulture specialist, developing, building, owning and operating energy and controlled-environment agriculture sites around the UK, including operation of 70 MW of sustainable horticultural CHP energy centres.  P3P also makes strategic investments in related ventures, including leading vertical farming business, Oragen Group and a founding stake in leading agricultural-waste AD and biomethane developer, Acorn Bioenergy.