Newcastle-based Crosbys acquire rivals John Dodds to create North East catering equipment force

Gateshead-based John Dodds will now become part of Crosbys, with the combined firm now having a turnover of £8m.

From left, Roger Crosby, managing director at Crosbys; Michael Atkinson, head of Sales at John Dodds and John Hammill of Square One Law
From left, Roger Crosby, managing director at Crosbys; Michael Atkinson, head of Sales at John Dodds and John Hammill of Square One Law

Byker catering equipment suppliers Crosbys have acquired regional rivals John Dodds of Gateshead.

The two family firms brokered the undisclosed deal following the John Dodds’ family move into commercial and rental holiday property.

Team Valley-based John Dodds was founded in 1965 to supply the retail meat trade with consumables and machinery, and gradually grew to supply the catering industry with equipment for the manufacture, cooking, hot and cold storage of foodstuffs and surrounding steel benches, sinks and other work surfaces, along with smaller sundry items such as tableware and furniture.

The firm has supplied local authorities, large organisations, schools, hospitals, prisons, care homes, hotels, restaurants and takeaway outlets.

Crosbys director Roger Crosby said: “John Dodds is a well respected, third-generation family-run business which has a remarkable 50 year history and we are delighted to welcome its sales and engineering staff on board with us for what promises to be a very successful future.

“We had been looking to expand our range and variety of activities within the catering trade following our recent move to bigger premises in Brough Park Way, and after discussions with the Dodds family it became clear that the areas we cover between our two companies would be a good fit.

“This acquisition will undoubtedly further strengthen our offering to the industry, and it will be business as usual for all customers of John Dodds and Crosbys as we look forward to our continued growth and development together.”

A move to online sales in the catering equipment market and less need to carry a large volume of stock had led directors of John Dodds to consider the future of its current base.

At the same time the family behind the 40 year-old firm had become involved in property activities and wanted more time to commit.

John Dodds has now moved into Crosby’s Brough Park Way premises as a result of the deal.

John Dodds director Nigel Dodds said: “We had reached an appropriate time for a change in direction at our company, and we believe that we have found the ideal outcome with Crosbys. Our well-established presence in the supply and maintenance of equipment and sundries will complement their operation well, bringing with it years of expertise from our own sales staff and engineers who will join Crosbys to form an even stronger team for the years ahead.”

Crosby was advised throughout the acquisition process by John Hammill of commercial law firm Square One Law.

Ian Gilthorpe, senior partner at Square One Law, said: “I am pleased that Roger is delighted with the service John has given him through the acquisition process, and we look forward to working with the business as it expands.”

Crosbys is celebrating its 25th anniversary this year and supplies crockery, cutlery, specialist catering equipment, paper and janitorial supplies to more than 2000 customers in the North, including bars, restaurants and hospitals, as well as a series of London restaurants and Michelin establishments across the UK and overseas.

The firm also project manages custom design kitchen projects, and runs a specialised van-based sales facility called Chef 7, which takes catering products from the warehouse directly to time-strapped chefs in their kitchens.

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