Boyne Notches 14x Return on B&W Exit

Boyne Capital has sold B&W Quality Growers to Blue Road Capital. Boyne acquired B&W in March 2015 from the founding fifth-generation family owners in partnership with management.

B&W is a producer of baby leaves, including watercress, arugula, and other specialty leafy greens. The company grows, packs and ships its products to foodservice, retail, wholesale, and specialty channels year-round.

B&W has processing facilities in three states and farming operations in Florida, Alabama, Tennessee, West Virginia, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Arizona and California. The company, led by CEO Mark DeLeo, was founded in 1870 and is headquartered south of Orlando in Fellsmere, FL (www.bwqualitygrowers.com).

“Boyne has been a great partner as we transitioned a 140-year, family-owned business to a state-of-the-art agricultural enterprise,” said Mr. DeLeo. “Together we made significant investments in the development of the B&W brand, management team, facilities and product lines, enabling us to grow revenue and EBITDA dramatically over the course of our partnership. When the opportunity arose to buy B&W, I immediately called Boyne. Based on my long history working with Derek McDowell, I knew they’d deliver on their word and be a great partner.”

Boyne makes investments in lower middle market companies that have revenues of less than $100 million and EBITDA of $2 million to $10 million. Sectors of interest include healthcare services, agriculture, consumer products, niche manufacturing, and business and financial services. Boyne was founded by Mr. McDowell in 2006 and is headquartered in Miami (www.boynecapital.com).

“Boyne is proud to have partnered with B&W, Mark DeLeo and the entire senior management team. It has been a privilege to be a part of B&W’s 140 plus year family history,” said Derek McDowell, Boyne’s managing partner and CEO. “During our partnership, B&W completed a major capital investment program which tripled its capacity and launched multiple new products which fueled its significant growth.”

“Working with Mark DeLeo and companies like B&W are core to our mission as we look to support managers and entrepreneurs who are passionate about the businesses they are building,” added Mr. McDowell. “This collaboration generated a tremendous outcome for our investors, delivering over 14x multiple on invested capital and in excess of a 100% gross IRR. We are confident B&W, its management team, and Blue Road will continue to build upon this foundation for their continued success.”

Blue Road Capital makes control investments in Americas-based agricultural and food/ingredient supply chain and production companies. The firm was founded in 2013 and is headquartered in New York (www.blueroad.com).

“We are delighted to announce the acquisition of B&W as our platform in the specialty leafy green industry,” said John Duryea, a founding partner of Blue Road. “We have been studying the category for several years and have been familiar with B&W and its reputation for quality and food safety for some time.  With its distinct business model and leading share in the watercress and arugula markets, B&W is uniquely positioned as a platform for continued consistent growth. We look forward to partnering with Mark and B&W’s management team to continue B&W’s growth in the foodservice and retail markets and augment its specialty green product offering. We also envision future add-on acquisitions of companies that can benefit from being a part of the B&W platform.”

Harris Williams was the financial advisor to B&W on this transaction.

© 2019 Private Equity Professional | July 12, 2019

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