Food and Beverage Retailers

Are You Planning To Sell Your Food and Beverage Shop or Store? 

Even if you’re exploring a sale as a remote possibility, we can help. We always start with a free, confidential consultation to give you an opportunity to ask questions. And we’ll give you answers specific to your circumstances. Whether your concerns are around the likely time frame, market conditions, or getting the best price, we’ll give you a clear view of possible next steps. 

Mergers and Acquisitions Advice for Food and Beverage Retailers

Morgan & Westfield are business brokers to the food and beverage industry. We have years of experience in selling retail companies. We know what buyers look for in potential acquisitions, and we advise sellers on how to prepare to show their businesses in the best possible light. Whatever your products – candy, dairy, grocery, organic, specialty, and the like – we have sold retail businesses in every niche. Many business owners find going it alone in the selling, or mergers and acquisitions, process tricky, especially when negotiating with serial buyers. We offer you in-depth knowledge of the entire sales process. 

Get a Business Valuation for Your Food and Beverage Retail Business

A good starting point for any business owner wanting to sell is knowing the value of your business. We offer a thorough, unbiased assessment of your business to help you decide if now is the right time to sell. We can also guide you through the entire sales process, from preparing your business to ironing out the details of the purchase agreement and beyond. Grocery stores, multi-chain convenience stores, specialty food retailers, whatever type of food and beverage retailer you are, we’re on your side. 

Types of Businesses We Sell and Value 

  • Candy Shops
  • Chocolate Boutiques
  • Convenience Stores
  • Dairy Products Stores
  • Delicatessen Retailers
  • Ethnic Food Stores
  • Farmers Markets
  • Food Cooperatives
  • Grocery Stores
  • Health Food Stores
  • Health Supplement Stores
  • Ice Cream Parlors 
  • Hypermarkets
  • Mobile Food Trucks
  • Natural and Plant-Based Food Stores
  • Online Food Retailers
  • Organic Food Stores
  • Pop-Up Food Stalls
  • Specialty Food Stores
  • Supermarkets
  • Tea and Coffee Shops
  • Wine and Liquor Stores

Overview of the Food and Beverage Retail Industry

Retail in the food and beverage industry means all food and drink consumers buy other than via restaurants, so, from candy shops to wine and liquor stores, and everything in between. Whatever the state of the economy, people need to eat, and this creates a constant need for retail food products. These can be perishable, like eggs and milk, or non-perishable, say, canned foods and drinks with long shelf lives. A retailer buys in large quantities from manufacturers, directly, or through a wholesaler, then sells in smaller quantities to consumers through physical stalls and stores, e-commerce websites, or mobile apps. 

Food and ingredients in the United States are usually monitored by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, U.S. Department of Agriculture, and other state and federal agencies. Roughly 3,000 agencies handle this work. Many other countries have similar set-ups.

How We Got Here – A Brief History

  • 1916 – First Self-Service Grocery Store Established: Piggly Wiggly, the first self-service grocery store, was established in the United States, introducing the concept of customers selecting their own items from shelves.
  • 1919 – First Drive-In Food Concept Established: A&W Root Beer, the first drive-in restaurant, was established in the United States, pioneering the concept of car-side food service. 
  • 1930s – Discount Stores Started: The Great Depression led to the rise of discount stores, such as Aldi in Germany. They offered lower-priced food products to budget-conscious consumers.
  • 1948 – Centralized Buying Introduced: The first supermarket chain, Kroger, introduced the idea of centralized buying and distribution, enabling greater efficiency in product sourcing and pricing.
  • 1950s – Supermarket Popularized: Supermarkets gained popularity, offering a wider variety of food products and becoming a one-stop shopping destination for consumers.
  • 1962 – First Walmart Opened: Walmart opened its first store, focused on discounted prices and large-scale operations. It eventually became the world’s largest retailer.
  • 1963 – First Hypermarket Opened: Carrefour, the first hypermarket, opened in France. It combined a supermarket and a department store under one roof.
  • 1970s – Convenience Stores’ Popularity Increased: Convenience stores, such as 7-Eleven, experienced significant growth, catering to customers’ need for quick and convenient purchases.
  • 1980s – Warehouse Clubs Emerged: Warehouse clubs, like Costco and Sam’s Club, emerged, targeting businesses and individuals who preferred to buy in bulk at lower prices. 
  • 1982 – First Commercial Barcode Scanners Used: The first commercial barcode scanner was used in a Marsh Supermarket in Ohio, revolutionizing the checkout process and inventory management. 
  • 1990s – E-Commerce Began: The rise of e-commerce began, with online grocery delivery services and online marketplaces like Amazon entering the food retail industry.
  • 1995 – Amazon Online Bookstore Founded: Amazon was founded as an online bookstore and later expanded to sell a range of products, including groceries, transforming the retail landscape.
  • 2000s – Specialty and Health-Focused Retailers Established: The organic and natural food movement gained traction, leading to specialty food stores and health-focused retailers.
  • 2005 – Whole Foods Market Grew: Whole Foods Market, specializing in natural and organic foods, gained prominence, reflecting growing consumer demand for healthier food options.
  • 2010s – Online Grocery Shopping Accelerated: The growth of online grocery shopping accelerated, with major retailers offering delivery and click-and-collect options to meet changing consumer preferences.
  • 2015 – Meal Kit Delivery Services Emerge: Meal kit delivery services, such as Blue Apron and HelloFresh, emerged. They sold pre-portioned ingredients and recipes and delivered them to customers’ homes.
  • 2017 – Amazon Bought Whole Foods: Signaling its entry into the brick-and-mortar grocery industry, Amazon bought Whole Foods Market and created further disruption in the sector.
  • 2019 – Plant-Based Food Options in Retail Surges: The popularity of plant-based foods surged, leading to the rapid expansion of vegan and vegetarian food options in retail stores and restaurants.
  • 2020s – Online Grocery Shopping Accelerated: The COVID-19 pandemic further accelerated the shift to online grocery shopping, with increased demand for contactless options and home delivery services.

Trends That May Affect M&A Activity

The following is a list of trends that may affect M&A activity in the retail industry: 

  • 24/7 Customer Service – Customer service expectations among consumers are higher than ever. Positive and negative experiences can affect the likelihood of repeat business.
  • E-Commerce Is Here To Stay – E-commerce exploded in popularity and volume of sales during the COVID-19 pandemic. This growth has slowed, but e-commerce shopping habits are here to stay. Technology has made it easier to sell online, and social commerce is on the rise.
  • Embrace the Digital Mobile Wallet – One emerging fintech and retail industry trend is the use of mobile payments. A study commissioned by Bank of America surveyed 1,000 of its adult customers who own a smartphone. The study found the overwhelming majority, 91%, saw their smartphones as an “indispensable companion” in daily life. 
  • In-Store Appointment Booking – Appointment shopping lets consumers book exclusive time in-store to browse products. This is an omnichannel and experiential retail sales strategy. It allows for greater personalization and white-glove customer service experiences.
  • Less Waste in Packaging – Consumers are demanding that retailers use recyclable and sustainable packaging for their products for both digital and physical purchases. And it’s little wonder. E-commerce packaging is the industry’s largest source of emissions; in fact, it’s six times higher than for products bought in-store.
  • Omnichannel Shopping – To stay competitive, retailers must integrate in-store and online experiences. Omnichannel shopping has quickly become the norm. Consumers want to be able to research online, and buy in-store. Or vice versa. And the distinction between the two has faded in recent years.
  • Personalized Retail Experience – Another retail trend that is becoming increasingly important to consumers is having a personalized shopping experience. Personalization in the retail world often involves retailers giving consumers suggestions based on their taste, location, order history, and previous searches. Retailers also create personalized experiences through simple services. This includes chat-bots that increase customer engagement and interaction, text messages that provide updates on orders, online- and tele-based communications, and other services.
  • Self-Service Checkout Options – Fast and efficient in-person shopping experiences became an expectation in 2022. Self-service checkouts are a major driver of this demand.
  • Social Commerce – With the growth of social media, the trend of social commerce has emerged, providing a convenient and seamless shopping experience for consumers. Brands are using social media platforms like Instagram and Facebook to sell products directly, creating a new retail channel for businesses to reach potential customers. This trend is set to continue and will likely play a significant role in the future of retail.
  • Sustainability and Ethical Business Practices – The trend toward sustainability and ethical business practices is gaining momentum, as more consumers are prioritizing environmental and social responsibility in their buying decisions. Retailers are recognizing the importance of integrating sustainable practices into their operations, from reducing waste and carbon emissions to sourcing ethically produced products. As consumers become more mindful of the effect of their consumption on the planet and society, retailers that prioritize sustainability and ethical practices are likely to gain a competitive advantage and earn customer loyalty.
  • The Rise of Experiential Retail – The rise of experiential retail is a response to changing consumer preferences, where customers are seeking more than a transactional shopping experience. Experiential retail is about creating an immersive and memorable experience that connects customers with a brand and encourages them to stay longer in-store. Customers want to be engaged, entertained, and emotionally connected with brands. 

Summary of Retail Industry Acquisitions

Summary of Acquisitions
Target Industry (Industry > Niche)Target Target LocationBuyer Industry BuyerBuyer LocationDatePurchase Price
E-Commerce > Grocery and In-store Fulfillment SolutionsGrocerKeyUSAOnline Delivery TechPoint Pickup TechnologiesUSAAug 2021$42 Million
E-Commerce > Online Grocery SolutionsShop HeroUSAFoodservice RedistributionDot FoodsUSAJun 2021Undisclosed
Grocery Store Chain > Retail Stores, Supermarkets, Traditional StoresThe Bashas’ CompanyUSAGrocery and Retail TechnologyRaley’sUSADec 2021Undisclosed
Full-Service Grocery > Fresh Produce, Bakery Goods, Deli, EthnicSave MartUSAPrivate EquityKingswood CapitalUSAMar 2022Undisclosed
Grocery Chain > Meat, Deli and Fresh ProduceTony’s Fresh MarketUSAPrivate EquityApolloUSAApr 2022Undisclosed
Grocery Delivery > Pantry Items, Eggs, Dairy, ProteinsImperfect FoodsUSAOnline DeliveryMisfits MarketUSASep 2022Undisclosed
Grocery Store > General Groceries, Prepared MealsCardenas MarketsUSAPrivate EquityApolloUSAJun 2022Undisclosed
Online Delivery > Food and Grocery DeliveryMaxDeliveryUSAOnline RetailBoxedUSANov 2021Undisclosed

Point Pickup Technologies Acquired GrocerKey (E-commerce)

  • Date: August 2021
  • Price: $42 Million
  • Target: GrocerKey – The leading provider of grocery e-commerce technology and in-store fulfillment solutions, helping retailers build profitable online businesses.
  • Location: Wisconsin, USA
  • Buyer: Point Pickup Technologies – The leading enterprise-only, retail-branded provider of fulfillment and last-mile delivery services for top retailers in all 50 states.
  • Purpose: “Early on, we were impressed not just by the scale and sophistication of Point Pickup’s technology and services, but also their focus on bringing the customer back to enterprise retailers,” said Jeremy Neren, co-founder and CEO of GrocerKey, who will serve as SVP, eCommerce Strategy, at Point Pickup. “Being able to provide brands with complete control over their eCommerce services from point of sale to delivering to customers’ homes is a game-changer. I’m excited to join the Point Pickup team along with our GrocerKey family and am eager to move forward with the integration of our technologies and companies.”
  • Details: Point Pickup Technologies announced it acquired white-label eCommerce platform GrocerKey for $42 million, enabling Point Pickup to offer retailers the industry’s first end-to-end, own-branded, last-mile fulfillment and delivery service. It enables a seamless customer experience from purchase to delivery.

Dot Foods Acquired Shop Hero (E-commerce)

  • Date: June 2021
  • Price: Undisclosed
  • Target: ShopHero – The leading provider of online grocery solutions to independent retailers in the United States and Canada. ShopHero provides a white-label e-commerce solution for independent retailers.
  • Location: Utah, USA
  • Buyer: Dot Foods – The largest foodservice redistribution company in the United States, Dot offers over 112,000 products from 830 food industry manufacturers. Dot consolidates those products and delivers weekly in less-than-truckload quantities to distributors nationwide.
  • Purpose: Dot’s investment strengthens ShopHero’s e-commerce platform delivery capability to keep independent grocery retailers and partners competitive online. “We love the ShopHero business model. At Dot, we’re always looking for innovative solutions, and that’s exactly what ShopHero delivers every day. They are experts in retail grocery eCommerce solutions, and help their customers compete in an evolving, more digital retail environment. Their technology and integration capabilities impressed us right away. We’re excited about working together to make ShopHero an even stronger, bigger player in this market.” said Joe Tracy, Dot’s CEO.
  • Details: Dot Foods, the largest food industry redistributor in North America, acquired grocery e-commerce firm ShopHero. Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

Railey’s Acquired The Bashas’ Company (Grocery Store Chain)

The Bashas’ Company logo
  • Date: December 2021
  • Price: Undisclosed
  • Target: The Bashas’ Company – Bashas’ is a family-owned grocery store chain, primarily located in Arizona, with two locations outside the state in Crownpoint, New Mexico, and in Shiprock, New Mexico. Its headquarters are in unincorporated Maricopa County, Arizona, near Chandler.
  • Location: Arizona, USA
  • Buyer: The Raley’s Companies – Raley’s Supermarkets is an independent, family-owned American grocery and retail technology company headquartered in West Sacramento, California. It was founded in 1935 by Thomas P. Raley in Placerville, California.
  • Purpose: “As promised, we are committed to preserving and enhancing the existing Bashas’ brands, including AJ’s Fine Foods, Bashas’ Diné Market, Bashas’, Food City and Eddie’s Country Store,” said Keith Knopf, president and CEO of The Raley’s Companies. “Now part of a larger organization, the increased resources will ensure that reinvestment in stores, new store growth, expansion into new markets, enhanced technology and charitable giving is amplified.”
  • Details: The Bashas’ Company, which operates more than 100 grocery stores in Arizona (and two in New Mexico), joined a newly formed enterprise: The Raley’s Companies. The deal combined Bashas’ with a larger portfolio of retail and technology holdings controlled and managed by The Raley’s Companies.

Kingswood Capital Acquired Save Mart (Full-Service Grocery)

Kingswood Capital logo
  • Date: March 2022
  • Price: Undisclosed
  • Target: Save Mart Companies – The largest regional grocer in California, operating over 200 stores across California and Nevada. Save Mart stores are full-service grocery stores with a broad product offering, including fresh produce, bakery goods, deli foods, and ethnic foods.
  • Location: California, USA
  • Buyer: Kingswood Capital Management – A private investment firm focused on businesses undergoing varying degrees of operational, financial, or market-driven change. In addition to access to capital, it has relevant industry relationships and a broad network of internal and external operating resources that can strengthen the business and enhance value.
  • Purpose: For Kingswood, the deal offers a way to expand its retail footprint in Northern California.
    Details: Private equity firm Kingswood Capital Management bought The Save Mart Companies for an undisclosed sum.

Apollo Global Management Acquired Tony’s Fresh Market (Grocery Chain)

  • Date: April 2022
  • Price: Undisclosed
  • Target: Tony’s Fresh Market – A family-owned grocery chain with a full-service meat counter, extensive produce departments, domestic and imported deli foods, and fresh products.
  • Location: Illinois, USA
  • Buyer: Apollo Global Management, Inc. – A U.S-based, global private equity firm, Apollo provides investment management and invests in credit, private equity, and real assets.
  • Purpose: “With our investment in Tony’s, we are proud to support a high-performing company that is increasing access to quality, affordable groceries in a broad swath of neighborhoods as well as donating to local food banks to fight hunger,” said Joanna Reiss, an Apollo partner and the firm’s co-lead of impact investing. “We hope to further strengthen and scale Tony’s, and by doing so achieve strong financial performance alongside even greater impact.”
  • Details: Apollo Funds, a collection of funds managed by affiliates of private equity firm Apollo Global Management, acquired Chicago-based specialty grocery chain Tony’s Fresh Market. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. The company’s founders retained shares and held management positions, according to Apollo.

Apollo Acquired Cardenas Markets (Grocery Store)

  • Date: June 2022
  • Price: Undisclosed
  • Target: Cardenas Markets – Cardenas, headquartered in Ontario, California, is one of the largest Hispanic supermarket chains in the United States. It is a Mexican-focused market with general groceries plus a juice and fruit bar, tortillas, and prepared meals.
  • Location: California, USA
  • Buyer: Apollo Global Management, Inc. – A U.S-based, global private equity firm, Apollo provides investment management and invests in credit, private equity, and real assets.
  • Purpose: Apollo planned to merge Cardenas Markets with Tony’s Fresh Market, which it acquired in April 2022 (see above). According to Apollo, the aim was to “combine the best of both retailers and provide greater opportunities and scale for the respective brands and teams as they continue to bring quality, affordable groceries to diverse communities.”
  • Details: Private equity firm Apollo Funds announced that funds managed by its affiliates have agreed to acquire Cardenas Markets – the 59-store Hispanic grocer with stores in California, Nevada and Arizona – from current owner KKR. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Misfits Market Acquired Imperfect Foods (Grocery Delivery)

  • Date: September 2022
  • Price: Undisclosed
  • Target: Imperfect Foods – Imperfect Foods was founded in 2015 with a mission to eliminate food waste and build a better food system for everyone. It offers imperfect, yet delicious, produce, affordable pantry items, and quality eggs, dairy, proteins, and more.
  • Location: San Francisco, USA
  • Buyer: Misfits Market – Misfits Market is an online service that delivers organic produce directly to customers’ doors.
  • Purpose: Misfits Market founder and CEO Abi Ramesh said the overlap in mission, audience, and brand positioning as well as the ability to scale operations factored into acquisition. “We think there’s an opportunity through this combination for us to be a true standalone, sustainable online grocery store at a scale that doesn’t exist today,” he said.
  • Details: Misfits Market acquired fellow online grocer Imperfect Foods. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed. The brands ran separately in the short term, but will look to combine under one label. Misfits Market founder and CEO Abi Ramesh is CEO of the combined companies, and executives from Imperfect Foods joined the Misfits leadership team.

Boxed Acquired MaxDelivery (Online Delivery)

MaxDelivery logo
  • Date: November 2021
  • Price: Undisclosed
  • Target: MaxDelivery – MaxDelivery provides food and grocery delivery services in New York City. It also offers wine and drug store delivery.
  • Location: New York, USA
  • Buyer: Boxed, Inc. – A U.S. online and mobile membership-free wholesale retailer that offers direct delivery of bulk-sized packages via the Boxed app or website.
  • Purpose: Chieh Huang, co-founder and CEO of Boxed, said, “This acquisition of MaxDelivery will mark our entry point into the rapidly growing fast-grocery delivery space, in addition to broadening our capabilities in micro dark-store fulfillment and fresh supply chain. Boxed customers have expressed how they value fresh groceries and we are excited to be able to deliver a more comprehensive product offering while benefiting from a complimentary business model with similarly high average order values as Boxed. In the months after closing, we plan to implement MaxDelivery’s model into several additional regions as we generate value for the entire Boxed ecosystem. We believe that MaxDelivery will also benefit from the use of Boxed software technology as it becomes a client of our Software business.”
  • Details: Boxed, an e-commerce grocery platform that sells bulk consumables and licenses its e-commerce software to enterprise retailers, acquired MaxDelivery, one of New York’s first on-demand grocery delivery services.

Public Companies 

The following is a list of public companies that operate in the specialty food industry:

Ahold Delhaize (OTCMKTS: ADRNY): An international retail group operating supermarket chains, such as Stop & Shop, Giant Food, and Food Lion.

Albertsons Companies, Inc. (NYSE: ACI): A retail company operating grocery store brands, including Albertsons, Safeway, Vons, and Jewel-Osco.

Costco Wholesale Corporation (NASDAQ: COST): A membership-based warehouse club retailer that offers a range of groceries and other consumer products at discounted prices.

Publix Super Markets, Inc. (NASDAQ: PUSH): A regional supermarket chain operating in the southeastern United States.

Sprouts Farmers Market, Inc. (NASDAQ: SFM): Sprouts Farmers Market, Inc., is a supermarket chain headquartered in Phoenix, Arizona, USA. The grocer offers a wide selection of natural and organic foods, including fresh produce, bulk foods, vitamins and supplements, packaged groceries, meat, poultry, seafood, deli, baked goods, dairy products, frozen foods, natural body care, and household items.

The Kroger Co. (NYSE: KR): The Kroger Company is a U.S. retail company that operates supermarkets and multi-department stores throughout the United States.

Walmart Inc. (NYSE: WMT): A U.S. multinational retailer that operates a chain of hypermarkets, discount department stores, and grocery stores in the United States, headquartered in Bentonville, Arkansas.

Whole Foods Market, Inc. (NASDAQ: WFM): Whole Foods Market, Inc., a subsidiary of Amazon, is a U.S. multinational supermarket chain headquartered in Austin, Texas. It sells products free from hydrogenated fats and artificial colors, flavors, and preservatives.

Private Equity Firms

The following is a list of private equity firms investing in the specialty food industry:

  • Advent International: Advent International is a global private equity firm focused on buyouts of companies in Western and Central Europe, North America, Latin America, and Asia. The firm focuses on international buyouts, growth, and strategic restructuring in five core sectors, including retail.

The Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf – The largest, privately held, specialty premium coffee and tea retailer in the United States.

  • Arbor Investments: Arbor Investments focuses on partnering with middle-market companies in the food and beverage industry to drive growth and create value.

Concord Foods – A leading supplier of retail food products and custom ingredients to nationally recognized supermarkets, foodservice operators, and leading food manufacturers.

Sam’s Wine & Spirits – A big-box retailer of wine, spirits, food, and accessories in the Chicago metropolitan area.

Trudeau – A specialty retail food distributor serving grocery stores and other distributors in the Midwest.

  • CVC Capital Partners: A global private equity firm that invests in various sectors, including the retail industry.

Landers Superstore – Landers Superstore is one of the fastest growing, large-format retailers in the Philippines. It has rapidly grown to a network of five branches with more than 45,000 square meters of retail space in Metro Manila and Metro Cebu. From offering the best deals at its Chevron-branded fuel stations to attractive sales discounts for its members in store, Landers offers access to thousands of global products at reasonable prices to grow its membership.

Sonae MC – Sonae MC is Portugal’s leading grocery retailer. It opened Portugal’s first hypermarket in 1985 and has since strengthened its position. The company operates over 600 stores across the country and is becoming the country’s leading online grocery channel. It operates under the Continente brand for its different food retail formats and operates a range of activities in adjacent segments, like para-pharmacy, coffee shops and beauty care.

Żabka Polska – Founded in 1998, Żabka is the leading Polish convenience retailer. It is among the fastest growing and largest grocery retail chains in Poland: in the last 23 years, Żabka has grown from a single convenience store in Poznań to a countrywide network of over 8,000 stores all operated by 7,000 franchisees.

  • Freeman Spogli: A private equity firm that invests in consumer-related and distribution companies in the United States.

A.J. Bayless Markets – A leading regional supermarket chain in Arizona, operating retail stores throughout the state.

Boys Markets – A leading regional supermarket chain in the Los Angeles metropolitan area.

Buttrey Food and Drug – Based in Great Falls, Montana, Buttrey Food and Drug Stores was a leading supermarket and pharmacy retailer, with a presence in Montana, North Dakota, and Wyoming.

Venture Capital Firms

The following is a list of venture capital firms investing in the specialty food industry:

  • Accel: Formerly Accel Partners, is a U.S. venture capital firm. It works with startups in seed, early, and growth-stage investments. The company has offices in Palo Alto, California, and San Francisco, California, with additional operating funds in London, India, and China.

Freshworks – An online grocery delivery platform that offers a wide range of grocery products and delivers them to customers’ doorsteps.

Flipkart – An Indian e-commerce company that includes a grocery division, offering a variety of grocery products for online purchase.

  • Better Food Ventures: Better Food Ventures invests in technology innovators making a positive impact in food and agriculture.

Dine Market – An online marketplace buying platform for restaurants and their suppliers. Suppliers offer their products, availability, and pricing to thousands of food supply buyers.

  • CAVU Ventures: Founded in 2015 by Rohan Oza, Clayton Christopher, and Brett Thomas, CAVU Consumer Partners is a consumer-focused investment firm founded to partner with high-growth and disruptive businesses.

Thrive Market – Thrive Market is a membership-based, e-commerce platform that offers and in some cases makes the highest quality, natural and organic products affordable for U.S. families.

  • Nucleus Capital: Nucleus Capital is a venture capital firm supporting purpose-driven founders. It invests in food technology companies at the pre-seed and seed stage.

GoTiger – GoTiger is an online supermarket that offers vegetables, beverages, fruits, meat, rice, noodles, soy, and stir sauces.

  • Sequoia Capital: A U.S. venture capital firm headquartered in Menlo Park, California, that specializes in seed stage, early stage, and growth stage investments in private companies across technology sectors. As of 2022, the firm had approximately $85 billion in assets under management.

Instacart – Instacart is an online grocery delivery company that connects customers with personal shoppers who deliver groceries from local stores.


The following is a list of professionals servicing or investing in the specialty food industry:

Angel Investors

  • Alliance of Angels: An angel investor network based in the United States. It invests in a wide range of sectors, including food and beverage. Investments it has made in the industry include:

Home Grocer – Home Grocer is an online grocery store offering high-quality, brand-name food and non-food items delivered directly to customers’ homes.

  • B. Craig Hutson: B. Craig Hutson is an angel investor and entrepreneur with a combination of CFO start-up experience, consumer-packaged goods/food and beverage sector expertise and a broad finance background.

Anycart – Anycart combines the features of grocery delivery services and recipe websites in a single platform. Users can shop for any meal and order the groceries needed, with free home delivery or store pickup from grocery stores in 200+ cities.

Dom’s – Dom’s hybrid kitchen and market redefines the neighborhood market into a place that elevates the ready-to-eat grocery segment to a restaurant-quality experience. Using a digital strategy and e-commerce rollout, Dom’s ready-made food selections offer personalized and varied food options, while its restaurant features unique community experiences.

  • Wild Ventures: Wild Ventures is an angel fund focused on consumer health products and technology. It believes the best way to combat chronic health conditions is a lifestyle – not pills and surgery – so it invests in companies that empower people to lead healthier lives.

Thrive Market – Thrive Market is a membership-based, e-commerce platform that offers and in some cases makes the highest quality, natural and organic products affordable for U.S. families.


  • Bain & Company: A global management consulting firm known for providing advisory services to businesses across various industries. With experience working with almost two-thirds of the top 25 global grocery companies, Bain helps clients realize near-term results and long-term success. Its grocery consulting experts can help with category strategy and assortment, pricing and promotion, omnichannel experience, supplier negotiations, grocery store operations, cost reduction, and more. 
  • Clarkston Consulting: Offers retail consulting services. Clarkston partners with retail companies to meet their most pressing industry challenges. It serves clients through a suite of consulting services, including data and analytics, digital and tech, management and strategy, innovation, mergers and acquisitions, people and change, point-of-sale, order management, and more.
  • Columbus Consulting: Columbus Consulting’s retail consultants are industry practitioners who have worked with and for global brands in wholesale, retail, consumer-packaged goods, and grocery. For over two decades, the firm has been helping clients with merchandise planning, assortment planning, inventory planning, demand forecasting, financial planning, store systems consulting, IT consulting, point of sale consulting, supply chain consulting, data analytics consulting, digital transformation, and more.
  • The Poirier Group: A boutique management consulting firm based in Toronto, Poirier delivers sustainable process and performance improvements to medium-to-large businesses. It focuses on strategy, optimizing processes, increasing productivity, and reducing costs.

Law Firms/Attorneys 

  • Benesch Law: Benesch has been a part of the food and beverage industry for decades, working with clients to address the legal issues that arise from farm to table. It provides expertise in the areas that are essential to food and beverage clients’ success, and it acts for food and beverage manufacturers, processors, packagers, distributors, wholesalers, and retailers.
  • Downs Rachlin Martin PLLC: Downs Rachlin Martin’s food and beverage lawyers solve the challenges agribusinesses, wholesalers, retailers, micro-producers, breweries, distilleries, restaurants, and supplement producers face. From business operations to more thorny issues, such as organic, fair trade, GMO labeling, and Proposition 65 concerns, its attorneys handle all concerns.
  • Harter Secrest & Emery LLP: Harter Secrest & Emery provides legal services to agricultural, food, and alcohol beverage businesses, including dairy farmers and cooperatives, that play a role in the agribusiness sector. Its multidisciplinary team helps clients streamline the process, identify the proper licensing structure, and advise on acceptable trade practices. 
  • Thorntons: With decades of experience working with retail clients, Thorntons understands the difficulties and opportunities the sector can present. It acts for retailers, including national retail chains, a global supermarket and worldwide retailer, as well as independent shops and online e-commerce businesses. Dealing with issues ranging from renegotiation of inflexible and uncompetitive lease terms to supporting global expansion and brand protection, Thorntons can help with any legal aspect of food and beverage retail businesses. 

Retail Industry Associations

The following is a list of associations for the retail industry:

  • International Franchise Association: The International Franchise Association is a trade group focused on government and public relations efforts for the franchise industry.
  • National Grocers Association: The National Grocers Association represents independent retail and wholesale grocers on the federal level.
  • National Retail Federation: The National Retail Federation is the world’s largest retail trade association. Its members include department stores, specialty, discount, catalog, Internet, and independent retailers, chain restaurants, grocery stores, and multi-level marketing companies.
  • National Supermarket Association: Founded in 1989 by Hispanic entrepreneurs, the National Supermarket Association represents the interest of independent supermarket owners in New York and other urban cities throughout the East Coast, Mid-Atlantic region, and Florida.
  • Retail Industry Leaders Association: The premier gathering of the top legal minds in retail. Once a year, the Retail Industry Leaders Association and the Retail Litigation Center convene to assess and plan for an ever-changing landscape for retailers.

Retail Industry Publications

The following is a list of publications in the retail industry:

  • iXtenso: The magazine for retailers focuses on trends and innovations from industry and retail written for retailers in the food and non-food industries. Since it launched online in 2008, iXtenso has developed from a pure supplier directory for the retail sector and its partners into a trade publication for retailers. It wants to bridge the gap between suppliers and end users.
  • Retail Dive: Retail Dive provides in-depth journalism and insight into the most impactful news and trends shaping retail. Its newsletters and website cover topics such as brick-and-mortar, retail technology, e-commerce, marketing, payment technology, store operations, omnichannel, and more.
  • Retail4Growth: Retail4Growth is a one-stop hub for all news related to retail and its associated industries. It is the go-to place for anything related to the retail ecosystem – trends, news, technologies, solutions, space design, merchandising, and the people who make it happen. It covers the whole community and connects the buyers and sellers of retail related solutions, services, and technologies. 
  • Retail Gazette: Launched in September 2010, Retail Gazette is for retail professionals who want up-to-the-minute information on the UK retail industry. It publishes independently sourced news stories, interviews, comment, and analysis relating to the industry across grocery, fashion, e-commerce, property, technology, supply chain, HR, and entertainment.
  • Retail TouchPoints: An online publishing network for retail executives, Retail TouchPoints offers content focused on optimizing the customer experience across all channels. It covers topics like customer experience, store operations, machine learning, and digital commerce.
  • Retail Week: The UK’s leading provider of global retail industry news, retail market reports, and data, from across the retail sector. 

Resources (Books, Podcasts, etc.)

The following is a list of professionals servicing or investing in the retail industry:

  • Books 
    • Remarkable Retail: Despite the clickbait headlines that warn of a “retail apocalypse,” many brick-and-mortar retail brands are enjoying strong growth and profits. Others, however, are destined to become obsolete because they offer merely convenience, decent prices, or an okay shopping experience. In Remarkable Retail, industry thought leader Steve Dennis argues that retailers can no longer count on scarcity to drive sales, or settle for providing indifferent in-store experiences, because customers live online and have a wealth of choices and information at their fingertips.
    • Retail 101: The Guide to Managing and Marketing Your Retail Business: Whether you’re a seasoned merchant or retail newbie, Retail 101 is the guide you need to successfully manage, market, and grow your retail business – brick and mortar or online. From two of today’s top retail thought leaders, Retail 101 serves both as a strategic planning guide and as a hands-on practical reference that answers critical questions along the way.
    • The Secret Life of Groceries: The Dark Miracle of the American Supermarket: In this page-turning expose, author Benjamin Lorr pulls back the curtain on the highly secretive grocery industry. Combining deep sourcing, immersive reporting, and sharp, often laugh-out-loud prose, Lorr leads a wild investigation. He asks what does it take to run a supermarket? How does our food get on the shelves? And who suffers from our increasing demands for convenience and efficiency?
    • The Retail Revival: Reimagining Business for the New Age of Consumerism: Traditional retail is becoming increasingly volatile and challenged as a business model. Brick-and-mortar has shifted to online, while online is shifting into pop-up storefronts. Virtual stores in subway platforms and airports are offering new levels of convenience for harried commuters. High Street and Main Street are becoming the stuff of nostalgia.
  • Podcasts
    • Digital Grocer Podcast: The Digital Grocer is dedicated to discussing digital commerce issues, insights, and tips for grocery retailers.
    • The Grocery Insider: The Grocery Insider is the leading independent, unbiased, and 360-degree view of the food, drink, and grocery industry. It brings the unvarnished, unsanitized inside track. A critical friend to the grocery trade, it examines the latest news, views, and trends in bite-sized podcast chunks to busy time-crunched food and drink professionals.
    • The Grocery Insight Podcast: This podcast covers the retail sector, specifically food retailing and supermarkets, but it also considers other wider retail-based themes, with expert insight from Steve Dresser, a retail advisor to executives around the world and one of the top 10 retail influencers, as awarded by Vend in 2019. The podcast considers the latest news in the retail sector alongside thoughts on stores, wider retail, store standards, technology, and “running the least bad stores” with the “most cynical man in retail” at the helm. This is a must-listen for anyone involved with retail.
    • The Retail Perch: Hosted by the duo Shekar Raman, CEO of Birdzi, and Gary Hawkins, CEO of Center for Advancing Retail & Technology, this podcast provides a fresh perspective and framework for how you view your everyday grocery trips. Whether a retailer, entrepreneur, or a curious mind tuning in, there is something in store for everyone. Each Monday, the hosts share supermarket analysis, personal stories about the industry, along with their views to provide further insight into everything retail grocery and AI.

Industry Information


  • 4451 – Grocery and Convenience Retailers
  • 445110 – Supermarkets and Other Grocery Retailers (except Convenience Retailers)
  • 445131 – Convenience Retailers
  • 445132 – Vending Machine Operators
  • 4452 – Specialty Food Retailers
  • 445230 – Fruit and Vegetable Retailers
  • 445240 – Meat Retailers
  • 445250 – Fish and Seafood Retailers
  • 445291 – Baked Goods Retailers
  • 445292 – Confectionery and Nut Retailers
  • 445298 – All Other Specialty Food Retailers
  • 4453 – Beer, Wine, and Liquor Retailers
  • 445320 – Beer, Wine, and Liquor Retailers
  • 4561 – Health and Personal Care Retailers
  • 456110 – Pharmacies and Drug Retailers
  • 456191 – Food (Health) Supplement Retailers
  • 456199 – All Other Health and Personal Care Retailers

SIC Codes

  • 5411 – Grocery Stores (Convenience Food Stores – Retail)
  • 541101 – Supermarkets
  • 541102 – Convenience Stores
  • 541199 – Grocery Stores, Not Elsewhere Classified (NEC)
  • 54119901 – Cooperative Food Stores
  • 54119902 – Delicatessen Stores
  • 54119903 – Frozen Food and Freezer Plans, Except Meat
  • 54119904 – Grocery Stores, Chain
  • 54119905 – Grocery Stores, Independent

Contact Us Today To Sell Your Food and Beverage Retail Business

After putting in the hard yards to grow your food and beverage retail business, you’ve decided to sell? As you may know, it’s far from a straightforward process. We help retailers across the industry get the best price when they sell. We work with you from the start, to help prepare both you and your business for the sale. And we stick with you throughout, from the appraisal and valuation to negotiating the purchase agreement and beyond. Contact us today for a free, confidential consultation.