Vendor Due Diligence: Fuelling Freshcut Foods’ Sale to Flywheel Partners

Providing vendor commercial due diligence to support the successful sale of Freshcut Foods to Flywheel Partners

Meet the client

Freshcut Foods supplies more than 300 plant-based ingredients to over 40 foodservice operators, food manufacturers and B2B clients in the UK. Established in 2003, the company employs over 320 staff across three manufacturing facilities in Nottingham, in the English east Midlands. 

The high value-added plant-based ingredients supplier has benefitted from the rise in flexitarianism, where consumers are increasingly incorporating vegetables and other plant-based products into their diets for health, sustainability and financial reasons. 

With a strong emphasis on becoming a trusted supplier to high-quality destination brands and top-tier B2B operators, Freshcut has successfully established itself as a reliable partner in the foodservice industry, as well as manufacturers and meal kit suppliers such as Hello Fresh. By consistently delivering exceptional service and innovation, Freshcut has earned the trust and loyalty of its customers, solidifying its reputation as a go-to provider. 


Assessing Freshcut Foods' Niche Market Value

Freshcut Foods and its owners, Perwyn, required a third party to complete commercial due diligence of the business, ahead of it entering a sale process. 

As an innovative market leader in a relatively niche industry, it was critical to Management and Perwyn that the strength of Freshcut’s position in the market and the value it offered to customers was fully evaluated and communicated to potential investors. 

In addition, an impartial assessment of Management’s business plan, based on robust evidence and stress-testing any assumptions made, was critical. 

Some of the challenges faced included: 

  • Accurately sizing the addressable market for Freshcut given its niche, premium positioning 
  • Assessing the growth prospects of a high value-added plant-based ingredients supplier, taking into account economic, societal and consumer trends 
  • Identifying the headroom for growth across key channels and any potential barriers 
  • Understanding and illustrating the unique advantage gained through Freshcut’s specialist Food Innovation capability 
  • Validating with customers their feedback on the service received and their continued commitment to the business and its products

STRAT7 Advisory was commissioned to complete the due diligence. Our knowledge of the sector and extensive foodservice expert network were key reasons we were chosen ahead of our competitors. 

STRAT7 were integral to successfully exiting Freshcut to Flywheel. Their rigour and flexibility in evaluating the business provided the understanding and confidence prospective bidders needed. We were impressed with how their work brought the business to life for interested parties through commercial due diligence and they worked extremely well with Management to stress test the business plan. We would happily partner with them again on due diligence work in the future.” 

Investment Manager, Perwyn

How our Commercial Due Diligence Unveiled Freshcut Foods' True Potential

We undertook an exhaustive programme of research and analysis, ahead of delivering a report that anticipated and addressed the key questions potential buyers would have before investing in Freshcut. Our work included: 

  • Understanding and articulating the Freshcut value proposition and clearly defining the customer and competitor ecosystem in which it operates, to help audiences new to the business quickly get up to speed 
  • Evaluating the total and target addressable markets for Freshcut, including their dynamics and structure, size, historical performance and growth prospects, backed up by clear and compelling evidence 
  • Robustly evaluating how well the business serves its current customers and their attitudes towards it, including past performance and future intent 
  • Assessing the current strength and future longevity of Freshcut’s customer value proposition through a holistic assessment of expert, customer, market and commercial perspectives 
  • Providing a detailed examination of past trading performance, including customer retention, acquisition and NPD, detailing any exceptions 
  • Contextualising Freshcut’s performance with a detailed assessment of competitor propositions and performance 
  • Impartially evaluating Management’s business plan in the context of past performance and future growth prospects, identifying any areas of concern as well as potential upsides to the plan, based on our research 


Our methodology included an extensive foodservice operator survey, customer reference calls, market research and modelling, trading data analysis, Management interviews and expert interviews. 

The results

Our due diligence report was shared with prospective bidders and lenders and our team subsequently held Q&A sessions with interested parties during the sales process. 

Following our work, Freshcut Foods was successfully acquired by Flywheel Partners in July 2023. 


Joe Lockey

Senior Analyst

Joe joined us after completing rotations across our consumer, services and health sectors, whilst gaining exposure to both qualitative and quantitative research techniques.


Alice Hedlund


Alice has experience in customer-centric growth, brand strategy and innovation at global scale. She specialises in brand transformation journeys, bridging the gap between business and brand strategy to create holistic and actionable plans for impactful growth.

Helen Donald


Job Title

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Tom Carvell


Tom has a science background with a PhD in Materials Chemistry. He has spent most of his career working on in-house front-end innovation where he delivered mid/long term strategic projects for brands such as Durex, Scholl, Veet and KY. He is focussed on delivering pragmatic but provocative innovation strategy for CPG categories.

Manick Pratheeban

Senior Principal

Manick is a brand strategy and consumer insight specialist with 15+ years’ experience helping to grow some of the world’s biggest brands. He has a proven track record of translating trends, consumer, and market data into actionable insights to formulate growth strategies.

Kate Jones

Senior Principal

Kate has over a decade of experience in creating transformative strategies for customer-focused businesses. With a background in consumer insight and behaviour change across consumer health, packaged goods, leisure, banking and other sectors she focuses on elevating the customer experience to create human-centric innovations and foster impactful growth.

Jacob Gascoine-Becker


Jacob specialises in leveraging consumer research to inform investment strategy and business case development. A management consultant since 2014, he previously spent eight years working in ecommerce and digital marketing.

Ines Achabal

Senior Analyst

Ines is inately curious and creative. She is known for her expansive thinking when exploring client challenges and elevating the visual quality of outputs to maximise their impact.

Helene Mills


Helene has 20+ years’ experience advising business leaders and investors on growth strategy based upon consumer and market intelligence. Her particular specialism lies in leisure, retail, food and beverage sectors.

Helen Donald

Helen Donald


Helen has consulted businesses at different stages of growth across a variety of sectors, specialising in consumer packaged goods and consumer healthcare. She is an adept strategist, bringing clarity to the most complex of situations and connecting dots to create rich, future-proofed platforms for innovation, brand positioning and growth.

Allan Chen STRAT7 Advisory

Allan Chen

Senior Principal

Allan’s core skillset provides an analytical and commercial lens to address client challenges. He started his career as an actuary, and since then has held a broad range of strategic roles, improving performance across the private and public sector.


Björn Dufwenberg

Managing Director​

Björn has 15+ years’ experience in insight-driven transformation, across management consulting, as well as brand and innovation agency roles. Most recently he headed up the Customer-Led Transformation practice at PwC Sweden, until joining STRAT7 in 2021. He’s worked on global projects covering consumer goods, durables, spirits and beverages, retail, banking, and private equity.

Kamilla Dala

Senior Principal

Kamilla has 10+ years’ experience leading and implementing insight-driven transformation within global matrix organisations in durable and consumable goods. Areas of expertise cover segmentation, uncovering and translating actionable consumer insights within innovation, product development, brand positioning, strategy and marketing.