Greencore Group chef
Greencore already produces sandwiches, salads, sushi and desserts for U.S. customers, including Starbucks and 7-Eleven.

DUBLIN, IRELAND — Greencore Group, an international manufacturer and supplier of prepared foods and ingredients, has agreed to acquire Geneva, Ill.-based Peacock Foods for $747.5 million. News of the transaction, which Greencore executives called transformational, pushed the Dublin-based company’s share price up more than 14% on Nov. 14 in early trading on the London Stock Exchange.

Founded in 1942 as Peacock Engineering and renamed earlier this year, Peacock Foods is a processor of frozen breakfasts, children’s chilled meal kits and salad kits. The company operates seven facilities totaling more than 2 million square feet in California, Illinois and Ohio. The company’s revenues are approximately $1 billion with an adjusted EBITDA of $72.1 million through September 2016.

Patrick Coveney, Greencore Group
Patrick Coveney, c.e.o. of Greencore

“The acquisition of Peacock will transform our U.S. business, strengthen our position in high growth categories, broaden our channel and customer exposure, and add significant scale to our operations,” said Patrick Coveney, chief executive officer of Greencore. “We believe Peacock’s success is built on the same fundamental strategy and values that drive Greencore. We are delighted to welcome the Peacock team into the Greencore Group.”

Specifically, Greencore said the acquisition of Peacock Foods will provide it with a step change in scale in overall revenues, a presence in attractive growing categories and a national manufacturing footprint. Additionally, it will introduce Greencore to new channels and customers, including Tyson Foods, Kraft Heinz and Dole, companies that Peacock has had a longstanding relationship.

Tom Sampson, Peacock Foods
Tom Sampson, c.e.o. of Peacock Foods

Tom Sampson, c.e.o. of Peacock Foods, added, “We are thrilled to be joining the Greencore team at this important time in our growth. We have been particularly struck by the similarities in the way we run our business and our mutual long-term commitment to the U.S. convenience food market. We are excited by the opportunity that we now have to leverage Greencore’s expertise in innovation and fresh food manufacturing, thereby bringing a broader set of capabilities to our customers.”

Once the transaction is finalized, Peacock will be folded into Greencore’s U.S. division, which will be led by Chris Kirke, currently c.e.o. of Greencore’s U.S. division. Mr. Sampson will be named a senior adviser to Greencore with responsibility for managing customer transition and integration over the next two years.