A FAMILY-owned feeds manufacturer is targeting further growth after buying a rival.

B Dugdale & Son, which trades as Dugdale Nutrition from its base in Salthill, Clitheroe, has completed its acquisition of Liverpool firm B Tickle & Sons.

Together, the two family-owned businesses have supplied farmers of northern England and beyond for 330 years.

The deal is a real boost to the company as manufacturing of compound feeds had reached full capacity at Dugdale’s Clitheroe site.

Dugdale took up all of the Liverpool company’s share capital with undisclosed funding support from Barclays.

The purchase means Matthew Tickle joins the Dugdale Nutrition board in the role of operations director, to work alongside managing director Matthew Dugdale and finance director Michael Townend.

Mr Dugdale and Mr Townend have also joined the board at B Tickle & Sons.

Tickle will operate as a wholly owned subsidiary of B Dugdale & Son and continue to manufacture ruminant feed.

The deal will give the combined business expanded warehousing capacity at Tickle’s Speke site, which will allow stockpiling before times of peak demand periods.

Work at the blending operation in Speke will stop, with production absorbed into Dugdale Nutrition’s new blend plant.

Mr Dugdale said: “Dugdale Nutrition had seen rapid expansion, particularly over the last two to three years.

“With the manufacture of compound feeds at the Clitheroe site at 100 per cent capacity, the acquisition of B Tickle & Sons allows extra manufacturing capacity, enabling the long-term aim of both companies to deliver outstanding customer service.”

Dugdale can trace its roots in the Ribble Valley back as far as 1850.

Barclays relationship director Steve Berry said: “Barclays is delighted to support this transaction - the unification of two long-established family businesses represents job security and opportunities for the employees of both companies.

“It also ensures that a strong independent ruminant feed manufacturer continues to serve the industry in the northern marketplace.”