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Weetabix has sold a 60% stake in its Northamptonshire-based breakfast cereals business to Bright Food of China, in a deal that values the company at £1.2bn.

Weetabix is to invest £16m in improvements to its 11 breakfast cereal manufacturing units in Northamptonshire and Tameside this year.

Weetabix has won planning permission from Kettering Council to expand its breakfast cereals site in Burton Latimer by over 14.5 hectares, including a new warehouse and two production units.

Weetabix is planning to expand its cereals factory in Northamptonshire with the creation of up to 150 jobs.

Weetabix, the breakfast cereal manufacturer, is to be acquired by Hicks, Muse, Tate & Furst, the US private equity firm that owns Premier Foods, for £642m.

Weetabix is to announce plans to expand its breakfast cereals plant in Burton Latimer, which currently employs 1,600.