The EF Group has announced the acquisition of Catercost – a menu planning, nutrition and allergen management service provider.
With the purchase, the catering cloud-based service provider, which trades as e-foods, is planning to expand its software platform to offer fully integrated menu planning, allergen compliance, purchasing and supply for all types of catering.
Development has already begun on a new version of the Catercost cloud-based menu planning software which is planned for launch in early 2020.
This will include enhanced allergen management, to ensure ingredient compliance across the supply chain and other intuitive catering efficiency enhancements.
The two businesses serve hundreds of organisations’ catering needs, from contract caterers, leisure and hospitality, to care homes, schools and hospitals.
The acquisition allows Catercost’s clients to gain the benefits of The EF Group’s own e-foods’ purchasing software, allowing them to buy from over 600 approved and vetted suppliers, with just one invoice to pay.
Paul Mizon, the CEO of the EF Group, said: “Profit pressures, food safety compliance, allergen awareness and the threat of supply disruption from Brexit are putting all types of caterer and their ability to deliver a quality and value service to their customers under pressure.
“The sector is increasingly in need of integrated software solutions, to help reduce costs and risk while ensuring customer satisfaction and availability of ingredients. Our ambition through this acquisition is to meet all of these needs so caterers of all types can focus on what they are great at.”
He continued, “This is a very exciting time for both Catercost’s and EF Group’s clients as we have ambitious plans to create additional value for them by introducing significant improvements to Catercost’s technology and services.
“We’re committed to ensuring all clients are well supported and have instant access to a range of services, from tailored solutions to one digital platform that delivers everything from full menu planning to supplier payment processing.”
With Catercost on board, the EF Group’s clients will be able to take advantage of a much broader range of specialist services.
In addition to best-value procurement, audited supply management, consolidated ordering and fixed price agreements, they will now gain additional benefits from menu planning and costing, and essential allergen and nutritional information.