Gryphon Investors Agrees to Sell Flagstone Foods to TreeHouse Foods
SAN FRANCISCO -- June 30, 2014
Gryphon Investors (“Gryphon”), a San Francisco-based private equity firm,
announced today that it has agreed to sell its portfolio company Flagstone
Foods™ to TreeHouse Foods in a transaction valued at $860 million.
Flagstone Foods, based in Saint Paul, Minnesota, is one of the nation’s
leading providers of branded and private-label healthy snacks to major
retailers across North America in the multi-billion dollar healthy snacks
sector. The company was formed in November 2010 when Gryphon simultaneously
acquired two independent companies, Ann’s House of Nuts®, the largest
private-label manufacturer and marketer of trail mix and snack nuts in the
world, and American Importing Company® (Amport Foods), the largest
private-label manufacturer and marketer of dried fruits, to create the leading
healthy snacks manufacturer in the country.
“We are delighted to have executed on our original vision of building a truly
premier company in the rapidly growing healthy snacks sector. The strategic
combination of Ann’s and Amport formed a vehicle for tremendous value creation
under the direction of Gryphon’s proactively-recruited management team,” said
David Andrews, Gryphon’s CEO and Managing Partner.
Keith Stimson, Gryphon Partner, added, “We are quite happy with the outcome of
this transaction. TreeHouse has the resources and expertise to help continue
Flagstone’s path of growth into new product categories and geographic markets.
Gryphon achieved our goal of completing a sale that positions Flagstone for
continued success, while also generating attractive returns for our limited
partners and coinvestors in this investment, including the respective founders
of Ann’s and Amport.”
Paul Lapadat, the CEO of Flagstone, commented, “Consistent with their strategy
for Flagstone in recruiting me, Gryphon has been an exceptionally supportive
partner, while delivering invaluable financial and operational guidance as we
built the business. Our management team looks forward to utilizing the
resources and support of TreeHouse to maintain our momentum and continue our
growth strategies as a leading healthy snacking partner for major retailers.”
David Andrews further noted, “Flagstone’s ability to drive industry-leading
top- and bottom-line growth organically over the past three years was
impressive and reflects Gryphon’s ability to combine an innovative sector
strategy with the right platform and management team. Paul Lapadat and the
entire Flagstone management team have charted a course that Gryphon believes
will attractively grow the company for many years. We wish them much continued
Moelis & Company LLC, Houlihan Lokey Capital, Inc. and BMO Capital Markets
Corp. acted as advisors to Gryphon, and Kirkland & Ellis LLP served as company
counsel on the transaction. The transaction is subject to regulatory approvals
and customary closing conditions.
About Gryphon Investors
Based in San Francisco, Gryphon Investors (www.gryphoninvestors.com) focuses
on leveraged acquisitions of, and growth investments in, middle-market
companies in partnership with experienced management. Having managed over $1
billion of discretionary equity capital, Gryphon has an extensive track record
of investing up to $100 million of its own capital in companies with sales
ranging from approximately $50 to $500 million. Gryphon prioritizes investment
opportunities where it can form proactive partnerships with owners and
executives to build leading companies, utilizing Gryphon’s capital,
professional resources and operational expertise.
About Flagstone Foods
Flagstone Foods purchases, prepares, packages, distributes and sells over
1,500 branded and private label varieties of snack nuts, trail mixes, dried
fruit, snack mixes and other wholesome snacks to major retailers in North
America. The Flagstone Foods family of companies currently consists of Ann’s
House of Nuts, the largest manufacturer and marketer of trail mixes in the
world, and American Importing Company (Amport Foods), the largest private
label manufacturer and marketer of dried fruits. The Flagstone Foods
management team is comprised of consumer packaged goods food industry
executives with experience from ConAgra, General Mills, Kraft Foods, The
Pillsbury Company, Michael Foods, Procter & Gamble, and Ralcorp. For further
information, visit www.flagstonefoods.com.
Owen Blicksilver Public Relations, Inc.
Caroline Luz, 203-656-2829
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