Hearthside Food Solutions (“Hearthside”), a leading contract manufacturer, today announced the signing of a definitive agreement to acquire Greencore USA, a leader in frozen contract packaging and a top producer of refrigerated, fresh-made sandwiches, entrees, and salad kits.This transaction marks a significant step in the further growth and development of Hearthside’s network. The transaction remains subject to regulatory approval and customary closing conditions.
Greencore USA is the US unit of Greencore Group plc, an Ireland-based public company. Greencore USA operates 13 locations across North America, with 3,500 employees, and 2017 revenues of $1.4 billion.
Hearthside was acquired in May 2018 by Charlesbank Capital Partners and Partners Group on behalf of their clients. Greencore USA, prior to being purchased by Greencore Group PLC, was known as Peacock Foods and was owned by Charlesbank from 2010-2016. The equity for this transaction will be provided by Charlesbank and Partners Group, each of which has reserved significant incremental capacity to continue to invest organically and through acquisition in the Hearthside platform.
The Greencore USA acquisition expands and diversifies the Hearthside network to 38 production facilities in the US and Europe.
“Consumer choice is driving growth in frozen, refrigerated and fresh sandwiches/entrees, where Greencore USA is a recognized leader. Leading brands are expanding into these categories and are seeking additional value chain services. The acquisition of Greencore USA will expand our production, innovation, and R&D capabilities across these categories,” said Rich Scalise, Hearthside Chairman and CEO.
“The synergies and complementary strengths of Hearthside and Greencore USA are impressive. Both serve the world’s premier food companies, and both are known for and committed to lean, world-class manufacturing, setting high standards for quality, safety, and speed-to-market. Both companies are also committed to innovation and exemplary customer service, possessing complementary category expertise and capabilities. The combination of the two companies will generate exciting new product and service opportunities for their customers,” said Chris Russell, Managing Director, Partners Group.
“The Greencore USA acquisition will expand Hearthside’s position in high-growth categories and broaden capabilities for existing and new customers, while further scaling operations. We are excited about the considerable synergies in culture, fundamental strategy, and operating principles,” said Ryan Carroll, Managing Director at Charlesbank. “These companies share a commitment to making excellent products and building deep, long-term relationships with the world’s leading brands, as evident in their investments in world-class manufacturing, quality, safety, innovation and, most importantly, people. We are thrilled to work with the Greencore USA team again and to welcome them to the Hearthside family.”
HSBC and Barclays served as financial advisors to Hearthside on this transaction. Ropes & Gray LLP served as legal advisor to Hearthside, Charlesbank and Partners Group on the transaction.
About Hearthside Food Solutions
Hearthside Food Solutions is a contract manufacturer headquartered in Downers Grove, Illinois. The company is a leading producer of nutrition and snack bars, as well as a full-service provider of high-quality snack food products and packaging services for some of the world’s premier brands. Hearthside currently operates 25 food-manufacturing facilities, including four in Europe. In 2018, Hearthside was acquired by Charlesbank and Partners Group. For more information on Hearthside Food Solutions, visit www.hearthsidefoods.com.
About Charlesbank Capital Partners
Based in Boston and New York, Charlesbank Capital Partners is a middle-market private equity investment firm managing more than $5 billion of capital. Charlesbank focuses on management-led buyouts and growth capital financings and also engages in opportunistic credit investments. The firm seeks to partner with strong management teams to build companies with sustainable competitive advantage and excellent prospects for growth. For more information, please visit www.charlesbank.com.
About Partners Group
Partners Group is a global private markets investment management firm with USD 78 billion in investment programs under management in private equity, private real estate, private infrastructure and private debt. The firm manages a broad range of customized portfolios for an international clientele of institutional investors. Partners Group is headquartered in Zug, Switzerland and has offices in Denver, Houston, New York, São Paulo, London, Guernsey, Paris, Luxembourg, Milan, Munich, Dubai, Mumbai, Singapore, Manila, Shanghai, Seoul, Tokyo and Sydney. The firm employs over 1,000 people and is listed on the SIX Swiss Exchange (symbol: PGHN) with a major ownership by its partners and employees.