Australian Food Manufacturers Enter Administration as Uncertain Futures Loom

by Ella

Two prominent Australian food manufacturers, Sara Lee and Catalano Seafood, have recently appointed voluntary administrators, casting a shadow of uncertainty over their future operations.

Sara Lee, renowned for its delectable cakes and ice-creams, has been a stalwart in the Australian food industry for half a century. However, a shift in ownership took place in 2021 when New Zealand private equity firm South Island Office acquired the manufacturer from McCain Foods.


In response to the evolving situation, South Island Office has opted to place Sara Lee under the guidance of voluntary administrators from FTI Consulting, namely Vaughn Strawbridge, Kathryn Evans, and Joseph Hansell. Their primary aim is to initiate a comprehensive restructuring process and ultimately sell the business while maintaining ongoing operations.


Vaughn Strawbridge, one of the appointed administrators, stated, “We are working closely with Sara Lee’s management team and staff to ensure the continuity of operations while we chart a course for the company’s future. Our immediate focus is on initiating the sale or restructuring of the business to secure its longstanding manufacturing legacy in Australia. We anticipate substantial interest in the business and will collaborate with prospective parties and stakeholders to swiftly reach a resolution, ensuring the uninterrupted operation of the business and providing clarity to its dedicated staff and loyal customer base.”


Simultaneously, another well-established food producer, Catalano Seafood, headquartered in Western Australia, has also taken the path of appointing voluntary administrators. The responsibility for guiding the company through this turbulent period falls on the shoulders of administrators from McGrathNicol, Rob Brauer, and Linda Smith.


The administrators for Catalano Seafood have expressed their commitment to maintaining “business as usual” operations while embarking on an immediate and thorough evaluation of the company’s assets and business functions. This evaluation will pave the way for exploring potential options, including the sale and/or recapitalization of Catalano Seafood.

The recent decision marks a challenging year for the 50-year-old family-owned company, which made a notable move by listing on the stock exchange in March 2022. This strategic move aimed to secure funding for expansion from its Western Australian base into the eastern states. As the company currently suspends trading, stakeholders are eagerly watching for the outcomes of the administrators’ assessments and the potential steps ahead for both Sara Lee and Catalano Seafood.



Wellfoodrecipes is a professional gourmet portal, the main columns include gourmet recipes, healthy diet, desserts, festival recipes, meat and seafood recipes, etc.

【Contact us: [email protected]

Copyright © 2023