2018: M&A Acquisition Activity

The following is a summary of the major acquisitions that occurred in the food and beverage industry in 2018.

Legend

  • Date: The date the buyer acquired the target or brand, as reported in public sources.
  • Price: The price paid for the company being acquired.
  • Buyer: The company that acquired the target or brand.
  • Target: The company or brand that was acquired. For example, if Ford Motor Company acquired Audi, Ford Motor Company is the buyer, Volkswagen is the seller, and the target is Audi.
  • Location: The location of the target (i.e., the company or brand that was acquired).
  • Seller: The company that owned the target company or brand that was acquired. For example, if Volkswagen sold Audi, Volkswagen is the seller, and the target is Audi.
  • Purpose: The primary reason the buyer acquired the target or brand.
  • Details: Specific details regarding the transaction, such as the form of consideration (e.g., cash, stock, notes, etc.) and/or any contingent payments (e.g., earnouts, etc.).

Food Manufacturing M&A – General

Conagra Brands Acquired Pinnacle Foods (Packaged Foods)

Date:October 26, 2018
Price:$10.9 Billion 
Buyer:Conagra Brands, Inc. – A U.S. consumer packaged goods holding company based in Chicago, Illinois. Conagra produces and sells products under a variety of brand names in restaurants, supermarkets, and food service establishments.
Target:Pinnacle Foods – A packaged foods company specializing in frozen and shelf-stable foods with headquarters in Parsippany, New Jersey.
Location:New Jersey, U.S.
Purpose:Through the acquisition, Conagra Brands was able to add some iconic brands to its portfolio, including Duncan Hines, Birds Eye, Earth Balance, and Vlasic, as well as Glutino, Gardein, Udi’s, EVOL, and Wish-Bone, among others. 
Details:Conagra Brands acquired all outstanding shares of Pinnacle Foods in a stock and cash transaction with a value of roughly $10.9 billion, including Pinnacle Foods’ outstanding net debt. 

Tyson Foods Inc. Acquired American Proteins Inc. and AMPRO Products Inc. (Food and Beverage Manufacturing)

Date:May 15, 2018
Price:$850 Million 
Buyer:Tyson Foods Inc. – An American multinational corporation that operates in the food industry, based in Springdale, Arkansas.
Target:American Proteins Inc. and AMPRO Products Inc. – American Proteins is one of the world’s largest recyclers of poultry products. AMPRO is a food and beverage manufacturing company.
Location:Tennessee, USA
Purpose:The acquisition was expected to allow Tyson to recycle more animal products for pet food, feed, and aquaculture and increase its presence in the growing animal feed ingredient sector.
Details:The agreement was subject to customary closing conditions, including regulatory approvals.

Zensho Holdings Co. Ltd. Acquired Advanced Fresh Concepts Corp. (Sushi)

Date:October 16, 2018
Price:$257 Million
Buyer:Zensho Holdings (Zensho) – The largest food service company in Japan by sales, known for its beef bowl restaurant chains, Sukiya and Nakau. 
Target:Advanced Fresh Concepts Corp. – An in-store sushi chain with more than 4,000 locations throughout the United States, Australia, and Canada.
Location:California, USA
Purpose:The deal was to help make sushi an American lunchtime favorite, and get through the 2018 labor shortage in Japan.
Details:The purchase price was $257 million, the largest acquisition ever made by the Japanese restaurant chain operator, which is also one of the top 10 food service companies in the world.

Thomas H. Lee Partners Acquired Dakota Growers Pasta Company, Inc. (Pasta Market)

Date:October 1, 2018 
Price:$250 Million 
Buyer:Thomas H. Lee Partners, L.P. (THL) – A leading private equity firm investing in middle market growth companies based in North America, exclusively in four industry sectors, business and financial services, consumer and retail, media and healthcare, and information services and technology. 
Target:Dakota Growers Pasta Company, Inc – A top company in the approximately $5 billion North American pasta industry, holding leadership positions in the private label retail, ingredient, and food service channels. 
Location:Dakota, USA
Purpose:William P. Stiritz, Post’s Chairman and Chief Executive Officer said, “With Dakota Growers, Post continues to expand its portfolio into segments of the overall food industry where it sees opportunities to grow and diversify its strong cash flow.”
Details:Thomas H. Lee Partners, L.P. (THL) paid $250 million for a 62.5% stake in the Dakota Growers Pasta Company. Post Holdings created 8th Avenue Food & Provisions in the transaction, which included Post Holdings’ private brands business, partially capitalized by THL. 

Sun Pharm Investments Ltd. Acquired Bevo Agro (Propagated Plants Supplier)

Date:October 4, 2018
Price:$100 Million
Buyer:Sun Pharm Investments Ltd. – Operates as a cannabis company and offers technology, agriculture, pharmaceutical sales, consumer packaged goods, international distribution, and marketing with cannabis and cannabis-related purchase orders.
Target:Bevo Agro – Bevo is the largest supplier of propagated plants.
Location:British Columbia, Canada
Seller:CGM Ventures Inc. – Operates as a venture capital firm.
Purpose:Leo Benne, Vice President and Director of Bevo, said, “This transaction represents a positive growth opportunity for Bevo Agro, as Zenabis intends to invest up to $100 million to expand our greenhouse facility to provide a state-of-the-art cannabis production capacity.” 
Details:Bevo changed its name to Zenabis Global Inc., with Zenabis, being one of Sun Pharm’s established brands in the cannabis sector. The board of directors of Bevo unanimously approved the transaction. 

Graphic Packaging Holding Company Acquired Letica Corporation (Food Service)

Date:August 28, 2018
Price:$95 Million
Buyer:Graphic Packaging Holding Company – A top paper-based packaging solutions provider for food, food service, beverage, and other consumer product companies.
Target:Letica Corporation – A multi-faceted packaging company with diverse talent and technologies to support businesses on several fronts.
Location:Michigan, U.S.
Purpose:President and CEO Michael Doss said, “The transaction will further diversify our customer base, enhance our geographic footprint, and provide the needed capacity to meet the incremental demand for paper cups resulting from the ongoing shift out of polystyrene foam.”
Details:The transaction was subject to standard closing conditions and regulatory reviews.

Bonduelle SA Acquired Del Monte Canada (Fruits and Vegetables)

Date:July 3, 2018
Price:$43 Million
Buyer:Bonduelle Canada Inc. – A France-based global giant in ready-to-eat foods. 
Target:Del Monte, Canada – A processed fruit and vegetable company. 
Location:Ontario, Canada
Purpose:The company said that the Del Monte business in Canada, with revenues of approximately $60 million Canadian ($46 million), will enhance Bonduelle Americas Long Life unit’s frozen and canned vegetable business, primarily conducted under various retailer store brands.
Details:The acquired business excluded all personnel and industrial assets because Bonduelle will use its existing production capabilities and co-packers. 

B&G Foods Inc. Acquired McCann’s Irish Oatmeal (Irish Oatmeal and Convenience Foods)

Date:July 16, 2018
Price:$32 Million 
Buyer:B&G Foods, Inc. – An American branded foods holding company based in Parsippany, New Jersey.
Target:McCann’s Irish Oatmeal – Offers traditional steel-cut Irish oatmeal, as well as convenience-oriented products designed for busy consumers who love delicious and healthy food.
Location:Meath, Ireland
Purpose:Robert C. Cantwell, President and Chief Executive Officer of B&G Foods, stated, “This acquisition is another example, along with our acquisitions of Green Giant, Spice Islands, and other spices and seasoning brands, Victoria and Back to Nature, of our efforts in recent years to acquire better-for-you brands that taste great and resonate with today’s consumer.” 
Details:The deal was subject to customary closing and post-closing adjustments. B&G Foods funded the acquisition, related expenses with revolving loans under its existing credit facility and cash on hand. 

International Cannabrands Inc. Acquired La Vida Verde Inc. (Cannabis Food Products)

Date:January 7, 2019
Price:$12.1 Million
Buyer:International Cannabrands Inc. – Generates revenue from licensing fees, royalties, and agreements with companies. 
Target:La Vida Verde, Inc. – A highly respected branded cannabis product manufacturer and distributor based in Santa Cruz, CA.
Location:Washington State, USA
Purpose:“We are unbelievably excited about the revenue, distribution, and product expansion gains La Vida Verde is achieving. This acquisition tracks exactly to our business strategy, and we are pleased with the performance,” said Steve Gormley, the Company’s Chief Executive Officer.
Details:Under the transaction, International Cannabrands President and CEO Steve Gormley will be appointed to the board of La Vida. Also, either founders of La Vida, Eric Hara, or Bryce Berryessa, or their nominee will join the board of International Cannabrands. 

Food Manufacturing M&A – Snacks

Amplify Snack Brands Inc. Acquired Pirate Brands LLC (Snack Manufacturer)

Date:October 17, 2018
Price:$420 Million
Buyer:Amplify Snack Brands, Inc. – A fast growing “better-for-you” (BFY) snack brand company based in Austin, Texas.
Target:Pirate Brands, LLC – A manufacturer of snack products.
Location:New York, USA
Seller:The Hershey Co. – A U.S.-based multinational company and one of the biggest chocolate producers worldwide.
Purpose:Hershey’s Chief Growth Officer Mary Beth West said, “We expect the full Pirate Brands portfolio to be a great fit for Hershey’s growing Amplify business, which is targeted toward consumers looking for great-tasting snacks without compromise.”
Details:According to the company, the Pirate Brands business will operate as a part of the Hershey Amplify snacking unit in Austin, Texas.

Calbee UK Acquired Seabrook Crisps (Chips Producer)

Date:October 2018
Price:Undisclosed Amount
Buyer:Calbee UK – A Japanese snack food manufacturer.
Target:Seabrook Crisps – A brand of crisps produced in Bradford, England, by Seabrook Crisps Ltd.
Location:Bradford, England
Purpose:To broaden business in the UK snack market and expand the Calbee Group business in Europe by acquiring the Seabrook brand. 
Details:Japanese snack food producer Calbee made this deal to expand its position in Europe by acquiring 100% of the UK-based Seabrook Crisps shares. 

Barry Callebaut Acquired Burton’s Biscuits (UK Biscuit Manufacturer)

Date:September 19, 2018
Price:Undisclosed Amount
Buyer:Barry Callebaut – The world’s leading cocoa and high-quality chocolate producer.
Target:Burton’s Biscuit – The second largest biscuit manufacturer in the UK, with an inventory of over 12,000 tons of compound and chocolate each year.
Location:Hertfordshire, UK
Purpose:“We are delighted to strengthen the collaboration with our long-standing customer Burton’s and to further support a great British brand,” said Antoine de Saint-Affrique, chief executive officer of Barry Callebaut. He added, “This transaction is an excellent example of the power of long-term partnerships and outsourcing. It is also a clear sign of our commitment to support the growth of our business in the U.K. market.”
Details:Barry Callebaut successfully closed the deal with Burton’s, acquiring the chocolate manufacturing assets of their factory in Moreton, Wirral, near Liverpool (UK), after meeting closing conditions and regulatory approval. 

Krispy Kreme Doughnut Acquired Insomnia Cookies (Bakery Chain)

Date:July 20, 2018
Price:Undisclosed Amount
Buyer:Krispy Kreme Doughnut Corporation – An American multinational doughnut company and coffeehouse chain.
Target:Insomnia Cookies – An American bakery chain that delivers baked goods, warm cookies, and ice cream.
Location:Pennsylvania, USA
Purpose:Krispy Kreme Doughnut said acquiring a majority stake in Insomnia Cookies will help the doughnut and coffee chain expand beyond the glazed treats market.
Details:The transaction terms were undisclosed. After the closing, Insomnia Cookies will operate as an independent, standalone company, and Seth Berkowitz will continue to lead the company.

Biscuit International Acquired Arluy (Sweet Biscuits Producer)

Date:August 2, 2018
Price:Undisclosed Amount
Buyer:Biscuit International – One of Europe’s leading producers in the private-label sweet biscuit sector. Biscuit International produces 130,000 tons of waffles and biscuits in 14 factories in Europe and generated sales of $455 million over the last year.
Target:Arluy – Spanish sweet biscuits producer.
Location:Arrubal, Spain
Purpose:With this new operation, Biscuit International has established a strong position in Spain and in the European private-label sweet biscuit market.
Details:The financial details were undisclosed. Oaklins’ team in France advised the buyer in this transaction.

Food Manufacturing M&A – Pastries

T. Marzetti Company Acquired All the Assets of Bantam Bagels LLC (Bagels and Pancakes Producer)

Date:October 19, 2018
Price:$34 Million 
Buyer:T. Marzetti Company – The Specialty Food Group of the Lancaster Colony Corporation. T. Marzetti produces numerous fruit and vegetable dips, salad dressings, specialty brand items, and frozen baked goods.
Target:Bantam Bagels LLC – A producer and marketer of frozen mini-stuffed pancakes and mini-stuffed bagels for retail and food service customers.
Location:New York, USA
Purpose:Dave Ciesinski, CEO of Lancaster Colony, commented, “We are extremely excited to add Bantam Bagels to our specialty foods business. Bantam Bagels is a fast-emerging company that provides us with an entry into the large and growing frozen breakfast category.” 
Details:T. Marzetti funded the transaction internally with cash at a base purchase price of $34 million. Other terms of the transaction were undisclosed.

Finsbury Foods Acquired Ultrapharm (Gluten-Free Products)

Date:September 3, 2018 
Price:$32.2 Million 
Buyer:Finsbury Food Group PLC – A leading UK speciality bakery manufacturer of cake, bread and morning goods for both the retail and “out of home eating” food service channels.
Target:Ultrapharm Limited – A specifically gluten-free business that has manufactured products in the UK since 1993.
Location:New York, USA
Purpose:The acquisition of Ultrapharm supports the group’s ongoing strategy to further diversify its product capability into high growth areas.
Details:CFI UK acted as the exclusive corporate finance advisor to Ultrapharm Limited on its sale to Finsbury Food Group PLC.

Swander Pace Capital Acquired Bäckerhaus Veit, Ltd. (Bakery)

Date:October 26, 2018
Price:Undisclosed Amount
Buyer:Swander Pace Capital – A leading private equity firm specializing in investments in consumer products companies.
Target:Bäckerhaus Veit. – A leading producer of artisan European-style rolls, breads, buns, and soft pretzel products for top-tier food service and retail customers in North America. 
Location:Ontario, Canada
Purpose:CEO Sabine Veit said, “Swander Pace is the ideal partner to help us achieve our next phase of growth.”
Details:Duff & Phelps Securities Canada acted as exclusive advisors to Bäckerhaus Veit on the transaction. The terms of the deal were undisclosed.

Alcoholic Beverages M&A

Craft Brew Alliance Inc. Acquired Cisco Brewers Inc. (Brewery)

Date:October 11, 2018
Price:$23 Million
Buyer:Craft Brew Alliance – A publicly traded company that owns several beer and cider brands. 
Target:Cisco Brewers Inc. – Known for the finest beer, wine, and spirits for more than 25 years. Established on Nantucket and brewed for New England.
Location:Massachusetts, USA
Purpose:CBA will increase investments and resources to build on growth that Appalachian Mountain Brewery, Cisco Brewers, and Wynwood Brewing Company have achieved as partners
Details:CBA said it is also acquiring Appalachian Mountain Brewery of Boone, North Carolina, and Wynwood Brewing Co., of Miami. 

Diamond Estates Wines & Spirits Inc. Acquired Backyard Vineyards Inc. (Vineyards and Winery)

Date:June 28, 2018
Price:$3 Million 
Buyer:Diamond Estates Wines & Spirits Inc. – A winemaking company based in Niagara on the Lake, in Ontario, Canada.
Target:Backyard Vineyards Inc. – Operator of vineyards and a winery. The company’s services include producing, distributing, and storing alcoholic and non-alcoholic wines.
Location:British Columbia, Canada 
Purpose:This highly strategic transaction transforms Diamond Estates into a national producer of VQA wines and positions the company to build a major new winery in the internationally-recognized Okanagan Valley wine-producing region.
Details:The total purchase price is $3.0 million, consisting of $0.75 million of cash, $1.5 million of Diamond Estates stock valued at $0.32 per share, and the assumption of $0.75 million of debt. The vendor is Ewen Stewart.

Helltown Brewing LLC Acquired Rivertowne Brewing Company (Brewery)

Date:October 15, 2018
Price:$2.1 Million
Buyer:Helltown Brewing LLC – A rustic small-scale brewery filling growlers and bottling beer styles from light to dark.
Target:Rivertowne Brewing Company – A brewery headquartered in Export, PA., just outside Pittsburgh.
Location:Pennsylvania, USA
Purpose:Combining Rivertowne and Helltown creates an opportunity to grow and bring two legendary brands to consumers, offering customers the quality they deserve and the variety they expect.
Details:After filing for bankruptcy in May 2018, Rivertowne went up for auction with bids starting at $1.35 million. Helltown placed the winning bid of $2.1 million for Rivertowne’s Export, Pennsylvania-based brewery and land, and assets at its Verona and Monroeville brewpubs. 

Craft Collective Beerworks Acquired Postmark Brewing (Craft Brewery)

Date:October 15, 2018
Price:Undisclosed Amount 
Buyer:Craft Collective Beerworks – Canada’s only collaborative craft brewery, merging contract brewing, sales representation, and its proprietary brands into a one-stop, innovative solution for breweries and retailers in an increasingly competitive and difficult-to-navigate market.
Target:Postmark Brewing – A Vancouver, BC, born and built craft brewery.
Location:British Columbia, Canada
Purpose:“This acquisition is something we have been seeking for the Craft Collective business since inception,” said Craft Collective co-founder, Richard Sehmer. The move allows Postmark to increase production, sales, and distribution across the country.
Details:The team at Postmark was retained, with co-founder Steve Thorp continuing as Brand Director.

Non-Alcoholic Beverages M&A

Keurig Green Mountain Acquired Dr Pepper Snapple (Soft Drink Company)

Date:July 9, 2018
Price:$18.7 Billion
Buyer:Keurig Green Mountain – A publicly traded American beverage and coffee maker conglomerate with headquarters in Burlington, Massachusetts.
Target:Dr Pepper Snapple Group – A multinational soft drink company headquartered in Plano, Texas. As of July 2018, it became a business unit of the publicly traded conglomerate, Keurig Dr Pepper.
Location:Texas, USA
Seller:J.M. Smucker Co.’s R.W. – The J.M. Smucker Co. has a multifaceted portfolio that is attractive to generations of people and pets. The brand can be found in almost 90% of U.S. homes and in innumerable restaurants.
Purpose:Keurig Green Mountain acquired the Dr Pepper Snapple Group in an $18.7-billion deal to create a diverse portfolio of iconic beverage brands with exceptional distribution capability to serve virtually every consumer in North America.
Details:The Dr Pepper Snapple Board of Directors unanimously approved the terms of the agreement. The shareholders of Dr Pepper Snapple received $103.75 per share in a special cash dividend and retained 13% of the combined companies. 

Lavazza Spa Acquired Mars Drinks North America LLC (Non-Alcoholic Beverages)

Date:December 27, 2018
Price:$650 Million 
Buyer:Luigi Lavazza Group – An Italian manufacturer of coffee products.
Target:Mars Drinks North America LLC – A manufacturer and online retailer of hot beverages and hot beverage systems.
Location:Virginia, USA
Purpose:To enable Lavazza to fortify its direct coverage of every segment of the coffee sector with a focus on the “away-from-home” market, an approach based on the increasing direct interaction with consumers.
Details:The new name of the acquired business became Lavazza Professional. Through the transaction, the Lavazza Group has acquired Mars’ coffee businesses in Germany, North America, the UK, Canada, France, and Japan, including all related systems and production facilities in the United States and the UK.

Brynwood Partners U.S. Acquired Portfolio Brands of The J. M. Smucker Company (Food and Beverage Products)

Date:July 10, 2018 
Price:$375 Million
Buyer:Brynwood Partners U.S. – A private equity investment firm specializing in leveraged buyouts and other control investments.
Target:Portfolio Brands from The J. M. Smucker Company – An American manufacturer of food and beverage products.
Location:Ohio, USA
Purpose:Henk Hartong III, Chairman, and CEO of Brynwood Partners, stated, “The iconic portfolio of brands and the company’s strong Mid-Western manufacturing footprint will provide us with a solid platform to invest in and to grow.”
Details:For $375 million, Brynwood Partners VII L.P. acquired a portfolio of brands from The J.M. Smucker Company. The portfolio included the exclusive U.S. rights to the Pillsbury brand’s shelf-stable baking products and the White Lily, Hungry Jack, Jim Dandy, and Martha White brands. 

Lassonde Industries Inc. Acquired Old Orchard Brands LLC (Juice and Beverages)

Date:April 30, 2018 
Price:$146 Million 
Buyer:Lassonde Industries Inc. – A Canadian agri-food company in Rougemont and Montérégie, with operations throughout North America.
Target:Old Orchard Brands, LLC – A Sparta, Michigan-based juice company owned by Lassonde Industries.
Location:Michigan, USA
Purpose:“Adding the Old Orchard brand to our product portfolio will further strengthen our presence in the U.S. national brands sector,” said Pierre-Paul Lassonde, Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer of Lassonde Industries Inc. He added, “This transaction fits well within our sustained growth strategy and improves our overall position in the United States.”
Details:The transaction’s closing was contingent on the parties’ agreement to a plan that ensured compliance with specific due care regulatory obligations connected with using the real estate assets. The closing was also subject to standard conditions and terms, including obtaining regulatory approvals.

KUC Holding Acquired Zipfizz Corporation (Energy and Sports Drinks)

Date:May 17, 2018
Price:$80 Million 
Buyer:KUC Holding – A subsidiary company of Kingdomway. 
Target:Zipfizz Corporation – Produces and distributes energy and sports drink tubes.
Location:Washington State, USA
Details:After the completion of the transaction, Zipfizz became a wholly-owned subsidiary of the company, included in the company’s consolidated statement.

DS Services Acquired Mountain Valley Spring Company LLC (Bottled Water and Coolers)

Date:October 15, 2018 
Price:$78.5 Million
Buyer:DS Services of America, Inc. – Provides bottled water and water filtration coolers for homes and offices.
Target:Mountain Valley Spring Company LLC – A fast-growing spring and sparkling water brand and one of the most well-known home and office distribution (HOD) brands in the U.S. 
Location:Arkansas, USA
Purpose:Dave Muscato, President – DS Services, stated, “We are very excited about strengthening our business and adding a fast-growing premium spring, sparkling, and flavored water American brand to our portfolio. We have added not only a high growth premium water product but also an American brand that we can offer to consumers in iconic glass bottled packages.”
Details:DS Services, a Cott Corporation subsidiary, acquired The Mountain Valley Spring Company for $78.5 million cash from Great Range Capital on a debt and cash-free basis. It represented roughly 8x the estimated year 2 post-synergy adjusted EBITDA. Cott financed the transaction through a combination of its asset-based lending facility and cash on hand. 

IsoBev Inc. Acquired Azure Water Services LLC (Bottled Water)

Date:March 26, 2018
Price:$2.3 Million
Buyer:IsoBev Inc. – A premium beverage producer. All its beverages and pharmaceutical-grade bulk products are plant-based and contain clean label ingredients from non-GMO sources.
Target:Azure Bottling LLC – A premier water bottling facility in Leesburg, Florida. 
Location:Connecticut, USA
Purpose:Marcos Agramont, CEO of Isodiol, said, “The acquisition of the Azure water bottling facility is an important milestone for Isodiol.” He added, “This facility unlocks the value of our beverage portfolio, such as our CBD and hemp waters and the growth potential of some of our core business competencies.”
Details:IsoBev, Inc. acquired a 100% interest in Azure by combining cash and stock, paying $1 million cash upfront and $300,000 in six months. Azure will also receive $1 million in a 36-month escrow stock based on the closing price.

New Age Farm Inc. Acquired Drink Fresh Water LLC (Cannabidiol-Infused Beverages)

Date:September 25, 2018
Price:$1.6 Million
Buyer:New Age Farm Inc. – An agricultural services company that provides turnkey growing services and infrastructure for licensed marijuana growers and processors at its agri-campuses in Washington State.
Target:Drink Fresh Water LLC – A CBD-infused beverage company.
Location:California, USA 
Purpose:We are excited to join forces and work together to expand this industry-leading company into a true industry giant,” said Joshua Bartch, New Age Farm’s Chief Executive Officer. 
Details:Under the agreement, consideration for the acquisition was $1,275,000, with $75,000 payable in cash and $1,200,000 issuable in common shares of the company.

Coffee M&A

Coffee Holding Company Acquired Steep & Brew Inc. (Coffee, Tea, Syrups, and Sauces)

Date:April 24, 2018
Price:$2.8 Million
Buyer:Coffee Holding Company – An American integrated wholesale coffee dealer and roaster.
Target:Steep N Brew Coffee Inc. – Distributes coffee, tea, sauces, and syrups. 
Location:Wisconsin, USA
Purpose:According to Coffee Holding Company CEO and President Andrew Gordon, “This acquisition increases our presence in the upper Midwest and Great Lakes regions for food service opportunities which traditionally have been the smaller part of their business.”
Details:According to an announcement from Coffee Holding, the deal included $2.7 million in cash for all of Steep N Brew’s assets, plus $150,000 to cover a promissory note. 

Kraft Canada Acquired Ethical Bean Coffee (Coffee Roaster)

Date:September 24, 2018
Price:Undisclosed Amount
Buyer:Kraft Canada – A provider of high quality, delicious, and nutritious foods for any occasion, whether eating at home, a restaurant, or on the go.
Target:Ethical Bean Coffee – A 100% Fairtrade-certified organic coffee roaster in British Columbia (BC)
Location:London, UK
Purpose:“With Kraft Heinz’s expertise and scale, we’re confident that Ethical Bean Coffee will continue to deliver on that reputation to a much wider audience,” said Kraft Heinz Canada’s president, Carlos Piani. 
Details:Kraft Canada acquired the assets of Ethical Bean Coffee, the leading roaster of 100% fair trade, certified organic coffee. 

Wholesale & Distribution M&A

Bayer Acquired Monsanto (Agriculture)

Date:June 7, 2018
Price:$63 Billion 
Buyer:BayerA German multinational pharmaceutical company.
Target:MonsantoAn American agrochemical and agricultural biotechnology corporation.
Location:Missouri, USA
Purpose:The acquisition was predicted to generate significant revenue since Bayer expected a positive contribution to its core earnings per share beginning in 2019.
Details:In May 2016, Bayer reported its plans to acquire Monsanto, and in September 2016, it formally announced the transaction for $128 per share. The acquisition cost approximately $63 billion, accounting for Monsanto’s outstanding debt as of February 28, 2018.

Conagra Brands Inc. Acquired Pinnacle Foods Inc. (Packaged Foods)

Date:October 26, 2018
Price:$10.9 Billion 
Buyer:Conagra Brands Inc. – U.S.-based packaged foods company.
Target:Pinnacle Foods Inc. – A packaged foods company based in Parsippany, New Jersey, specializing in frozen and shelf-stable foods.
Location:New Jersey, USA
Purpose:Conagra Brands president and CEO Sean Connolly said, “Expanding Conagra Brands’ portfolio through the acquisition of Pinnacle Foods creates a tremendous opportunity to drive profitable growth and shareholder value by further leveraging our proven approach to innovation, brand-building, operational excellence, and deep customer relationships.” 
Details:After the approval of Pinnacle Foods’ shareholders and meeting the terms and conditions, Conagra finalized the deal. 

Tyson Foods Acquired Keystone Foods (Meats and Fish Products)

Date:August 20, 2018
Price:$2.4 Billion 
Buyer:Tyson Foods – An American multinational corporation and the world’s second-largest marketer and processor of beef, chicken, and pork, with headquarters in Springdale, Arkansas. 
Target:Keystone Foods – A global food service company that offers the finest consumer brands with high-quality frozen and fresh pork, poultry, beef, and fish.
Location:Pennsylvania, USA
Purpose:Tom Hayes, president and CEO of Tyson Foods, stated that Keystone “provides a significant foundation for international growth with its in-country operations, sales, and distribution network in high growth markets in the Asia Pacific region, as well as exports to key markets in Europe, the Middle East, and Africa.” 
Details:The acquisition included six processing plants and an innovation center, with locations in Georgia, Alabama, Kentucky, North Carolina, Wisconsin, and Pennsylvania.

The Kroger Co. Acquired Relish Labs LLC (Meal Kits and Food Delivery Service)

Date:May 23, 2018
Price:$700 Million 
Buyer:The Kroger Co. – A retail company that operates multi-department stores and supermarkets throughout the U.S.
Target:Relish Labs LLC – A Chicago, Illinois-based food delivery and meal kit company that delivers recipes and pre-portioned ingredients to weekly subscribers in America. 
Location:Illinois, USA
Purpose:The acquisition will enable Kroger to offer customers a range of plant-based meal options.
Details:After the closing, Relish Labs will operate as a subsidiary of Kroger, continuing to do business on homechef.com and assuming responsibility for Kroger’s meal solutions division. 

Health and Nutrition M&A

Keurig Dr Pepper Acquired Core Nutrition LLC (Nutrient-Enhanced Beverages)

Date:September 27, 2018
Price:$525 Million
Buyer:Keurig Dr Pepper Inc. (KDP) – A top producer and distributor of cold and hot beverages to satisfy every consumer’s need at any time. 
Target:Core Nutrition, LLC – Produces bottled water and organic beverages with a company value of $525 million. 
Location:California, USA
Purpose:KDP CEO Bob Gamgort stated, “CORE has been a valued and successful allied brand partner, and we are pleased that this on-trend beverage producer will become part of our owned KDP family of brands. Through this transaction, we intend to realize the full growth potential for the business.”
Details:KDP funded the acquisition of CORE Nutrition with KDP’s common stock, net of current equity investment, and certain other contractual adjustments. The company expects the deal to be neutral to KDP’s adjusted diluted earnings per share in 2019 and accretive after that.

Glanbia PLC Acquired SlimFast and Health and Nutrition Systems (Health and Nutrition)

Date:October 11, 2018 
Price:$350 Million
Buyer:Glanbia PLC 
Target:SlimFast and Health and Nutrition Systems – A top health and wellness and weight management brand distributed primarily in the food, drug, mass, and club (FDMC) channel in the UK and U.S.
Location:Florida, USA
Purpose:The transaction is in line with our strategic ambition to extend the reach of our Glanbia Performance Nutrition portfolio to related consumer needs.” said Siobhán Talbot, group managing director of Glanbia.
Details:Glanbia’s available banking facilities will fully finance the deal, and starting in 2019, it will be accretive to earnings per share.

Freedom Foods Acquired Crankt Protein (Nutrition Products)

Date:August 13, 2018 
Price:$2.5 Million
Buyer:Freedom Foods Group – Creates quality, on-trend, great-tasting, responsibly Australian-produced food and beverages.
Target:Crankt Protein – A nutrition products manufacturer. 
Location:New South Wales, Australia
Purpose:The Crankt brand will provide a unique vertical integration to Freedom Foods’ expanding packaging capabilities in beverage and bar formats and sourcing protein ingredients from internal dairy nutritional capabilities. 
Details:Australia’s Freedom Foods Group acquired nutrition products manufacturer Crankt Protein in a deal valued in gross terms at the Australian Dollar of 3.5m (USD$2.5m).

KYN Capital Group Inc. Acquired Algae World Inc. (Organic Foods and Beverages)

Date:October 15, 2018 
Price:$3 Million
Buyer:KYN Capital Group Inc. – A capital finance leasing company. The company focuses on real estate acquisitions, asset-based lending, and equipment leasing.
Target:Algae World Inc. – A worldwide manufacturer of blue-green algae, and growing and bringing organic foods to the market. The company is also involved with several CBD and blue-green algae infused products, including CBD water and soda.
Location:California, USA
Purpose:KYN made this expansion to generate significant business opportunities within North America and Bangladesh.

Harvest One Cannabis Inc. Acquired Dream Water Products Canada Inc. (Sleep-Aid Water and Powder)

Date:May 30, 2018 
Price:$34.5 Million Canadian
Buyer:Harvest One Cannabis Inc.A global cannabis company that offers innovative, high-quality cannabis technology and products to regulated markets worldwide.
Target:Dream Water Products Canada Inc. – Produces natural, convenient, travel-friendly, single serving 2.5oz liquid sleep shots and sleep powder packets that you can take with or without water.
Location:Alberta, Canada
Purpose:The transaction will deliver a ready-made consumer goods marketing, distribution, and product development division to Harvest One.
Details:Harvest One holds a substantial cash position of approximately $62 million Canadian and zero debt. As part of the transaction, the combination of Dream Water Canada and Dream Water USA became Dream Water Global. 

Meat M&A

Marfrig Global Foods SA Acquired National Beef Packing Co. LLC (Beef)

Date:April 10, 2018
Price:$969 Million 
Buyer:Marfrig Global Foods SA – One of the world’s leading producers of animal protein.
Target:National Beef Packing Co. LLC – The fourth-largest beef processor in the U.S.
Location:Missouri, USA
Purpose:The acquisition will make Marfrig the second-largest beef processor globally, with combined operations and sales of $13 billion. Adding National Beef will expand the export markets to Korea and Japan.
Details:According to Marfrig, the transaction was valued at $2.3 billion, including debt. 

Premium Brands Holdings Corporation Acquired Concord Premium Meats Ltd., The Meat Factory Ltd., Country Prime Meats, Ltd., and Frandon Seafood Inc. (Meat Processor)

Date:May 31, 2018
Price:$227 Million Canadian
Buyer:Premium Brands Holdings Corporation – A top producer, distributor, and marketer of branded specialty foods. 
Target:Concord Premium Meats Ltd, Country Prime Meats Ltd, The Meat Factory Ltd, and Frandon Seafood Inc. 
Location:British Columbia, Canada
Purpose:George Paleologou, president and CEO of Premium Brands, said, “We are very excited to welcome Concord and its talented management team into the Premium Brands family. Its entrepreneurial culture is a perfect fit for us.” 
Details:All four transactions were individually accretive to the company’s 2018 earnings.

Maple Leaf Foods Inc. Acquired Les Produits Alimentaires Viau Inc. (Italian Cooked Meats)

Date:November 13, 2018 
Price:$215 Million Canadian
Buyer:Maple Leaf Foods Inc. – A Canadian consumer packaged meats company. 
Target:VIAU Foods (“VIAU”) – A Canadian market leader in premium Italian cooked, dry-cured, and charcuterie meats for a purchase price of $215 million Canadian, including $30 million Canadian in Maple Leaf stock.
Location:Quebec, Canada
Purpose:This acquisition expanded Maple Leaf’s position in the growing premium dry cured and pepperoni meat products market and provided additional production capacity in Quebec, a substantial strategic base to grow Canadian and U.S. sales.
Details:With sales of $180 million as of the fiscal year ending on March 31, 2018, the transaction was expected to accrue to Maple Leaf’s earnings per share in the first year and the company’s margin expansion over time. 

Premium Brands Holdings Corporation Acquired Yorkshire Valley Farms Ltd. (Organic Chicken)

Date:July 30, 2018
Price:$65 Million 
Buyer:Premium Brands Holdings Corporation – A leading producer, distributor, and marketer of branded specialty food products in the U.S. and Canada, headquartered in Richmond, Canada. 
Target:Yorkshire Valley Farms Ltd – An Ontario-based marketer and processor of organic chicken products.
Location:Ontario Canada 
Purpose:“This transaction, which combines the unique strengths of Yorkshire with our wide range of resources and capabilities, strongly positions Yorkshire to accelerate its growth in this rapidly expanding market segment,” said George Paleologou, president and CEO of Premium Brands.
Details:Premium Brands Holdings Corp. acquired a 62.6% interest in Harriston, Ontario-based Yorkshire Valley Farms Ltd.

WholeStone Farms LLC, Acquired Hormel Foods Corporation (Meat)

Date:December 3, 2018
Price:$30 Million 
Buyer:WholeStone Farms, LLC – A family of 200 farmers producing high-quality pork provisions.
Target:Hormel Foods Corporation’s Processing Facility in Fremont, Nebraska – A global branded food company with over 20,000 team members all over the world.
Location:Minnesota, USA
Purpose:“The purchase of the Fremont, Nebraska, processing facility from Hormel Foods aligns with our vision to create and capture value in the pork supply chain for the 220 independent producers who own WholeStone Farms,” said Luke Minion, chairman of the board of directors of WholeStone Farms.
Details:The cash consideration was subject to closing adjustments and customary closing conditions. The transaction included a multi-year agreement to supply raw pork materials to Hormel Foods and a processing facility.

Indiana Packers Corporation Acquired Specialty Foods Group LLC (Processed Meat)

Date:August 24, 2018
Price:$27 Million 
Buyer:Indiana Packers Corporation (IPC) – Produces a full line of premium fresh, processed, and specialty pork products from the Midwest.
Target:Specialty Foods Group LLC (SFG) – An independent producer and marketer of premium branded and private-label processed meat products.
Location:Kentucky, USA
Purpose:The acquisition of SFG by IPC has created greater synergies, allowing IPC to stabilize and strengthen the integration of processes across its production chains, enriching consumers’ food choices.
Details:The acquisition agreement was subject to closing conditions and regulatory approval.

Dairy M&A

Saputo Inc. Acquired Shepherd Gourmet Dairy Inc. (Dairy Products)

Date:May 23, 2018
Price:$100 Million Canadian
Buyer:Saputo Inc. – A Canadian dairy company based in Montreal, Quebec, founded in 1954 by the Saputo family.
Target:Shepherd Gourmet Dairy Inc. – The company provides dairy products such as milk, ice cream, cheese, and yogurt.
Location:Ontario Canada
Purpose:The transaction allows the dairy division to expand its yogurt offerings and increase its presence in specialty cheese throughout Canada. 
Details:The purchase price was $100 million Canadian on a debt-free basis. 

Saputo Inc. Acquired F&A Dairy Products, Inc. (Cheese Manufacturer)

Date:October 26, 2018
Price:$85 Million.
Buyer:Saputo Inc. – A Canadian dairy company based in Montreal, Quebec, founded in 1954 by the Saputo family.
Target:F&A Dairy Products, Inc. – A manufacturer of cheeses.
Location:Wisconsin, United States
Purpose:According to Saputo, “The acquisition of F&A Dairy Products’ activities will add to and complement the activities of Saputo’s Cheese Division (USA).” 
Details:The transaction included two manufacturing facilities with roughly 170 employees, one in Dresser, Wisconsin, and one in Las Cruces, New Mexico.

Confectionery M&A

Fuji Oil Holding Acquired The Blommer Chocolate Company (Chocolate Manufacturer)

Date:November 19, 2018
Price:$750 Million 
Buyer:Fuji Oil Holding, Inc. – A global leader in oil and fat ingredients.
Target:The Blommer Chocolate Company – The largest ingredient chocolate manufacturer in North America. 
Location:Illinois, USA
Purpose:Peter Blommer, CEO and third-generation family member, said, “With our combined expertise in chocolate, fats, and oils, both rooted in product and process innovation, we have the opportunity to create a broad global footprint from which to serve our customers and drive growth.”
Details:The sale includes all Blommer business entities, including one manufacturing operation in Shanghai and four in North America. 

Round Hill Investments LLC Acquired New England Confectionery Company Inc. (Confectionery)

Date:May 31, 2018
Price:$17.3 Million 
Buyer:Round Hill Investments LLC – An investment management firm that serves individual and institutional investors.
Target:New England Confectionery Company Inc. (NECCO) – An American candy manufacturer founded in 1901 as the New England Confectionery Company by merging several small confectionery companies in the Greater Boston area going back as far as the 1840s.
Location:Massachusetts, USA
Purpose:“We are extremely excited to bring our extensive background and expertise to bear in working to revive Necco and its amazing brands, all of which have a special place in the heart of Americana,” said Evan Metropoulos.
Details:Round Hill Investments LLC, run by billionaire C. Dean Metropoulos, acquired Necco for $17.33 million. Round Hill Investments went into a bankruptcy auction in May 2018, and Spangler Candy Company was the winning bidder. 

C21 Investments Inc. Acquired Grön Chocolate LLC and Grön Confections LLC (Confectionery)

Date:August 13, 2018
Price:$6.8 Million
Buyer:C21 Investments Inc. – A vertically integrated cannabis corporation with brand recognition in the U.S. and internationally that cultivates, processes, and distributes hemp-derived and quality cannabis consumer products.
Target:Grön Chocolate LLC and Grön Confections LLC – One of Oregon’s most prominent companies specializing in premium consumer packaged edible cannabis products.
Location:Oregon, USA
Purpose:“Grön is a critical addition to C21’s growth strategy to acquire operations that can vertically integrate in each state and compete aggressively in the US$11 billion cannabis market in the United States,” said Robert Cheney, Chief Executive Officer, C21 Investments. 
Details:C21 Investments acquired 100% of Grön Chocolate’s membership units, and the transaction closed in November 2018. 

High Hampton Holdings Corp. Acquired California Gold Bars Inc. (Chocolate and Cocoa Manufacturer)

Date:July 31, 2018 
Price:$6.5 Million
Buyer:High Hampton Holdings Corp. – Provides services to the wellness and recreational U.S. cannabis market via partnered brands and distribution networks.
Target:California Gold Bars Inc. – A California corporation that owns the CALIGOLD Edibles brand.
Location:California, USA
Purpose:“CALIGOLD, with its award-winning products and established distribution network, bolsters our growing position in California and fits perfectly with our consolidation strategy for this burgeoning market,” said David E. Argudo, CEO/Director of High Hampton.
Details:In addition to the company’s licensed CoachellaGro asset, CALIGOLD is now the fourth 100% owned subsidiary, adding to High Hampton.

Pet Food M&A

General Mills Inc. Acquired Blue Buffalo Pet Products Inc. (Pet Food)

Date:April 24, 2018 
Price:$8 Billion
Buyer:General Mills, Inc. – An American multinational producer and marketer of branded consumer foods.
Target:Blue Buffalo Pet Products, Inc. – Produces the top-selling natural pet food, BLUE Life Protection Formula for cats and dogs.
Location:Connecticut, USA
Purpose:Blue Buffalo makes General Mills the leader in the wholesome natural pet food category and accelerates the company’s portfolio redesign initiative.
Details:General Mills, Inc, finalized the acquisition of Blue Buffalo Pet Products Inc. for $40 per share in an all-cash deal, an enterprise value of roughly $8.0 billion. 

The J. M. Smucker Company Acquired Ainsworth Pet Nutrition Parent LLC (Pet Food)

Date:April 4, 2018
Price:$1.7 Billion
Buyer:The J. M. Smucker Company – An American manufacturer of food and beverage products.
Target:Ainsworth Pet Nutrition Parent LLC – A top distributor, producer, and marketer of branded and private-label pet snacks and premium pet food, mainly in the U.S., including its Rachael Ray Nutrish brand. 
Location:Pennsylvania, USA 
Purpose:“Ainsworth Pet Nutrition is an excellent strategic fit for our company, as the Rachael Ray Nutrish brand adds another high-growth, on-trend brand to our pet food portfolio,” said Mark Smucker, Chief Executive Officer.
Details:The deal had a value of roughly $1.7 billion after an estimated tax benefit of $200 million. 

Charlee Bear Products Inc. Acquired Hound & Gatos Pet Food (Pet Food)

Date:June 28, 2018
Price:$1.65 Million 
Buyer:Due to the acquisition, Hound & Gatos is now based in Wisconsin but continues to be contract-manufactured in Mitchell, South Dakota. Charlee Bear has introduced line extensions, such as kibble and Paleolithic treats.
Target:Hound & Gatos Pet Foods Corp. – Hound and Gatos is a nationally distributed line of canned pet food marketed as a paleolithic diet for dogs and cats.
Location:New York, USA
Purpose:“Our passion for quality pet products and ingredients was a natural fit with Hound & Gatos, and we are pleased to welcome this brand into the Charlee Bear Products family,” said Peter Gottsacker, owner of Charlee Bear Products.
Details:Due to the acquisition, Hound & Gatos is now based in Wisconsin but continues to be contract manufactured in Mitchell, South Dakota. Charlee Bear has introduced line extensions, such as kibble and Paleolithic treats.

Restaurants M&A

Jollibee Foods Corporation Acquired Smashburger (Hamburger Restaurant)

Date:December. 14, 2018
Price:$10 Million
Buyer:Jollibee Foods Corporation – Asia’s largest food service company, a fast food restaurant chain headquartered in the Philippines. 
Target:Smashburger – A U.S. fast-casual hamburger restaurant chain founded in Denver, Colorado, with over 227 franchise and corporate-owned restaurants across 35 states, the District of Columbia, and two provinces in Canada.
Location:Colorado, USA
Purpose:Philippines-based Jollibee acquired Smashburger, giving the company a foothold in North America without brand translation risks. 
Details:The ownership change began in October 2015 when Jollibee acquired a 40% stake in Smashburger in a $335 million transaction. In February 2018, Jollibee snapped up an additional 45% of Smashburger for $100 million, raising its ownership stake to 85%. It cost Jollibee $10 million to acquire the remaining 15% of Smashburger shares. 

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