Sadel Group, a single-family office, is spotlighting the need to make food supply chains more resilient with a £300 million ($353 million; €341 million) commitment. The capital will be used for buyouts of SMEs in the food sector, pursuing a strategy of shortening and vertically integrating supply chains and reducing resource intensity to make food more accessible and affordable.

Sadel’s investments will be managed by newly formed UK private equity firm Isara Capital via an evergreen fund-of-one structure. It is not an impact fund and does not have SFDR Article 8 or 9 designation because it is not marketed to external investors. It will seek majority stakes in businesses in the UK and Western Europe, targeting holding periods of around five to seven years – longer than the typical holding period of closed-end funds – in order to execute its vertical integration strategy.

Food security and affordability has come into sharper focus due to recent events impacting Europe, such as the pandemic, Brexit and the war in Ukraine, and consequent inflation shocks and rising energy costs, founding partner Michael Rice told New Private Markets. Isara plans to implement value creation strategies for each of its acquisitions, said Rice. These could involve automating and integrating supply chains, including by investing in supply chain traceability and technology; reducing food miles, by for instance relocating food processing plants to near the point of sale or packaging locations; reducing food wastage; increasing energy efficiency; and developing waste-to-energy infrastructure on food production sites.

Sadel Group invests the personal wealth of brothers chief executive Stephen Lawrence and director Andrew Lawrence. The family generated its wealth through real estate investments and developments. The family office focuses on “supply chain security through automation, net zero and location”, according to its website.

Isara, a team of three, is headquartered in Leeds, UK, but shares London offices with Sadel.