Ethical flower business Arena Online has acquired UK plant delivery retailer Patch Plants.
The acquisition adds one of the UK’s leading direct-to-consumer brands to Arena’s portfolio, which already boasts the UK’s #1 rated ethical flower delivery company, ArenaFlowers.com – all powered by Arena’s proprietary and market-leading fulfilment platform. The result of this acquisition is a business of unrivalled capability and scale in the delivery of cut flowers, plants and gifts, which will bring value and choice to UK customers.
The acquisition builds upon Arena’s best-in-class fulfilment and technology platform, Hyperion™. which will deliver continued growth and efficiency.
The businesses are highly complementary, and the growth potential and synergies create significant opportunities to deliver value to the stakeholders of the enlarged group. Through the acquisition, Arena will gain the services of highly skilled members of the Patch leadership team, including founder and CEO, Freddie Blackett, who joins the new Arena group board as Chief Strategy Officer.
John Hackett, CEO of Arena, said: “We have long admired Patch and its development of a brilliant brand. The Patch team, ably led by Freddie, shares our commitment to sustainability, quality and execution and brings complementary and hugely valuable skills to our enlarged business.
“Much of Arena’s recent development investment has been focused on building Hyperion™, our unique ecommerce and fulfilment technology platform for flowers, plants and gift delivery, and we are excited that Patch is strengthening the portfolio. We look forward to the unrivalled customer offering we will bring to market for flower senders and plant lovers alike.”
The consolidation of the two businesses will be completed in the middle of this calendar year. It is expected that the acquisition will grow the enlarged group’s EBITDA by 50%, as well as open up further opportunities for long-term growth in both B2C and B2B.
Freddie Blackett, CEO of Patch, commented: “Having known the Arena team for a long time, I have always been impressed by their growth, but even more so by their ambition. I’m thrilled to be partnering with John, Will and their team and am truly excited about what the partnership means for Patch, my colleagues and our customers.
“Delivering plants seamlessly to people is no mean feat. We’ve built a market-leading customer experience but I know that the fulfilment specialism and technology that Arena has developed will give us huge opportunities to go even further. This extends not only to what both our businesses do today but also to other categories where we believe that our unique combination of strengths can create a very material competitive advantage.”
Will Wynne, serial entrepreneur and chair of the Arena group, added: “In troubled times, Arena is delighted to get 2023 off to a flying start by announcing this totemic acquisition. I’m proud of John and Freddie for making this deal happen and I congratulate them both. Welcome to the team, Freddie!
“At Arena, we are focused on partnerships and deals that align with our customer vision: to provide the highest quality, most ethically sourced personalised gifts, at scale, and at fantastic prices, to all segments of the UK market. This strategy reflects our values and creates value for shareholders, customers and our teams.
“I believe this deal marks an inflection point for the Arena group as we roll out our brands and B2B platform, Hyperion™. I’m also delighted to welcome several excellent senior leaders to the Arena leadership team. Finally, I welcome Octopus Ventures and Forward Partners onto our cap table and look forward to the very material shareholder value we will all create together.”