Investor interest

Ooni ovens couple in line for big payday from stake sale

Ooni pizza oven

Ooni ovens have been a big seller

A husband and wife who set up an outdoor pizza oven company nearly a decade ago are in line for a multi-million pound payday by selling a stake in the business.

Kristian Tapaninaho and Darina Garland, founders of Ooni Pizza Ovens in Broxburn, West Lothian, are believed to have attracted interest from a number of potential investors.

They are now looking to hire investment banks amid speculation the business could be valued in the hundreds of millions of pounds.

Ooni’s sales have taken off, rising fivefold in the past year to £55 million on the back of lockdown and enthusiastic reviews from as far afield as New York.

Darina Garland and Kristian Tapaninaho

Sources told Sky News that private equity firms with a track record of investing in consumer goods brands would be among the potential bidders for a stake.

The founders, who were running an education company, launched Ooni in 2012 in an attempt to replicate restaurant quality pizzas at home.

With 20 million pizzas cooked in Ooni ovens since 2013 and the business growing at 400% year on year, Ooni now has about 120 employees and has a presence in the US, Germany and China.

The company has made no comment.

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