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Civica acquires cloud software specialist Fretwell Downing Hospitality

Acquisition of software-as-a-service business adds to established compliance software portfolio 

Civica, a global leader in software for public services has announced that Civica UK Limited, the company’s wholly owned subsidiary, has acquired specialist cloud catering management software provider Fretwell Downing Hospitality.

Based in Sheffield, Fretwell Downing employs approximately 50 people and has a long and successful track record across a broad customer base. The company, which supports more than 220 customers, provides specialist cloud software in particular to manage, optimise and improve the provision of catering services. Its specialist capability is highly complementary to Civica’s established activities and cloud-based growth strategy.

Fretwell Downing’s market-leading software as a service (SaaS) solution Saffron streamlines activities from stock control, purchasing and management information solutions to the delivery of multi-site services. It underpins safety and wellbeing, supporting consistent and verifiable compliance with food standards and delivering key capabilities from allergen management to children’s nutrition and environmental awareness.  

Saffron cloud software is widely used by local authorities, schools, universities and NHS Trusts, together with commercial businesses, many of which provide services to the public sector. The company is currently enabling the continued production and delivery of meal orders for healthcare customers

Wayne Story, Civica Group CEO, said: “I am delighted to welcome Fretwell Downing to Civica. The company’s complementary cloud software and compliance expertise expands our capability and extends our market coverage in line with our cloud-first strategy. We look forward to the wide range of future opportunities that this creates to deliver additional value to customers in existing and adjacent markets.”

Phil Jones, Managing Director at Fretwell Downing Hospitality added: “We’re extremely excited to become part of the Civica Group, one of the UK’s leading software companies. This is a very positive move to enable us to expand our software into both the UK and global markets. We’re already proud of our position as a market leader and Civica’s knowledge and experience in providing cloud software solutions across a large customer base will be invaluable as we continue our growth in the coming years.”