Hometown Food Company buys Smucker and Pillsbury

Bakers Journal
September 07, 2018
Written by Bakers Journal
Brynwood Partners VII L.P. and Brynwood Partners VIII L.P. signed a definitive agreement to acquire a portfolio of brands from The J.M. Smucker Company for $375 million.  

The portfolio includes the exclusive U.S. rights to the iconic Pillsbury® brand's shelf-stable baking products along with four other American brands. The Pillsbury® brand license agreement is a royalty-free, perpetual agreement with General Mills, Inc. and encompasses all U.S. shelf-stable baking products, including flour, dry baking mixes and ready-to-spread frosting, in the retail channel. The transaction includes the 650,000 square foot manufacturing facility in Toledo, OH and is expected to close in the third quarter of 2018, subject to customary U.S. regulatory review.

Brynwood Partners created Hometown Food Company to acquire the assets from Smucker. Hometown Food Company will be headquartered in Chicago, IL and will operate the Toledo, OH facility. Pillsbury and Hungry Jack are leading national brands in the shelf-stable baking and breakfast categories. The Funfetti sub-brand is also included in the acquisition as are the strong regional brands White Lily, Jim Dandy and Martha White, which participate in the flour, cornmeal and grits categories. Many of the acquired products are manufactured at the Toledo, OH facility where approximately 255 full-time employees are employed.  

"We are extremely pleased to announce the formation of the Hometown Food Company, which marks the single largest acquisition in Brynwood Partners' 34-year history," said Henk Hartong III, Chairman and CEO of Brynwood Partners in a press release.  "We are excited to add the famous Pillsbury® and Hungry Jack® brands along with the White Lily®, Jim Dandy® and Martha White® brands and their great tasting products to our investment portfolio.”

"On behalf of Brynwood Partners, I would like to express my sincere gratitude to the Smucker team for working with us on this complex corporate carve out," said Ian MacTaggart, President and COO of Brynwood Partners. "We look forward to working closely with Smucker and the company's loyal employees to transition the business to our new platform.  This is a hallmark deal for Brynwood Partners and marks the 52nd brand acquisition from the 19th corporate seller across our long history."

Brynwood Partners did not retain an investment banking advisor but was represented by Holland & Knight LLP on legal matters.  

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