AUA Stays Hungry for Specialty Foods

Gourmet Culinary Holdings (GCH), a portfolio company of AUA Private Equity, has acquired Gourmet Foods.

Gourmet Foods is a family-owned manufacturer and distributor of specialty prepared foods including soups, sauces, hors d’oeuvres, appetizers, side items, and breakfast dishes serving the airline, hospitality, restaurant, catering, retail and corporate campuses industries.

The company, founded in 1986, has three production facilities near Los Angeles in Rancho Dominguez (headquarters); near San Francisco in Hayward, CA; and near New York in Woodland Park, NJ. Gourmet Foods also has nine warehouse distribution points across the US that provide it with national access to its customers (www.gourmetfoodsinc.com).

“The acquisition of Gourmet Foods allows GCH to further expand its national footprint and its product portfolio,” said Andy Unanue, managing partner of AUA Private Equity. “We are pleased to be partnering with an exceptional and talented management team who will continue to lead the business and provide further culinary expertise on behalf of GCH.”

AUA formed Gourmet Culinary Holdings in 2019 as a platform to acquire US-based specialty food manufacturers serving the foodservice and retail sectors. GCH currently has two operating companies. In March 2019, it acquired Gourmet Kitchen, a Neptune, NJ-based manufacturer of specialty prepared foods for hotels, restaurants, universities, corporate campuses, and distributors. The company’s products include appetizers, hors d’oeuvres, breakfast items, ethnic products, and desserts (www.gourmetkitcheninc.com). In April 2019, GCH acquired its second company with the buy of Kabobs, a Lake City, GA-based manufacturer of hors d’oeuvres, side items and ethnic and breakfast products that are sold to foodservice operators, hotels, convention centers, corporate campuses, professional caterers and universities (www.kabobs.com).

“We are excited to acquire Gourmet Foods and continue to expand the GCH platform through new distribution channels and production capabilities,” said Steven Flyer, a partner of AUA Private Equity. “The Gourmet Foods’ team brings a culinary-forward approach to innovation, quality, and consistency in its product offering. With the Gourmet Foods acquisition, we continue to execute on our plan of creating the leading premium specialty prepared foods platform in the U.S.” The AUA transaction team was led by Mr. Flyer along with Managing Director Kyce Chihi, and Vice President Ari David.

AUA Private Equity makes equity investments from $20 million to $75 million in companies with at least $5 million of EBITDA. Sectors of interest include consumer products and services with a focus on family-owned businesses and companies benefiting from the growth of the US Hispanic population. AUA is headquartered in New York (www.auaequity.com).

© 2019 Private Equity Professional | July 31, 2019

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