Sun Capital Partners has sold its investment in Sunrise Growers-Frozsun Foods, a supplier of frozen strawberry products, to Paine & Partners. Edward Haft will continue to lead Sunrise as President and Chief Executive Officer, along with the rest of Sunrise’s senior management team.
Sunrise Growers is a supplier of frozen strawberry products as well as a distributor and marketer of fresh strawberries. The company’s products include frozen strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, raspberries, cherries, peaches and fruit blends in multiple product specifications and packaging configurations. Sunrise Growers’ frozen berry operations produce in excess of 130 million pounds of processed strawberry and other fruit products annually, giving the company the number one US market share in frozen strawberries. The company sells to retail, industrial and foodservice customers. Sunrise Growers was founded in 1977 and is headquartered in Placentia, CA (www.sunrisegrowers.com).
Sun Capital first invested in Sunrise Growers in June 2008 and during the term of its ownership, Sunrise Growers improved growth and profitability through cost saving initiatives, facility consolidations, customer additions, new product introductions, and business rationalizations. In addition, the company stabilized its grower base and completed several equipment upgrades that meaningfully increased capacity.
“Sunrise Growers’ continued success as a market leader has been fueled by a disciplined commitment to strategic operational improvements, as well as pursuing innovative and customer-focused solutions,” said Marc Leder, Co-CEO at Sun Capital. “These efforts have contributed to excellent growth and improved profitability, and the company is well-positioned for future success.”
Sun Capital Partners is a private investment firm focused on leveraged buyouts, equity, debt, and other investments in market-leading companies that can benefit from its in-house operating professionals and experience. Sun Capital has invested in and managed more than 315 companies worldwide with combined sales in excess of $45 billion since the firm’s inception in 1995. Sun Capital Partners has offices in Boca Raton, Los Angeles, and New York as well as affiliates with offices in London, Paris, Frankfurt, Luxembourg, Shanghai and Shenzhen (www.SunCapPart.com).
“We are excited about our investment in Sunrise, a leader in the retail and foodservice frozen fruit markets that is well positioned to capitalize on the growing demand for healthy food options and quality frozen fruit products,” said Kevin Schwartz, a founding Partner at Paine & Partners. “We have been impressed by the company’s capabilities and the strong strategic relationships it has with its grower and customer partners. Together with the Sunrise management team, we have identified opportunities to enhance the company’s product offerings, including expansion into new fruit categories and markets. We look forward to continuing to work with Ed Haft and the rest of the Sunrise management team to execute on these exciting growth opportunities.”
Paine & Partners provides equity capital for management buyouts, going private transactions, and company expansion and growth programs. The firm, with $1.2 billion of capital under management, has offices in San Mateo, CA; New York, NY and Chicago, IL (www.painepartners.com).
“With Paine & Partners, we will continue to build on our diverse portfolio of quality products, state-of-the-art processing facilities and industry leading food safety practices. Our strong relationships with our leading retail and foodservice customers and grower partners are due to our product capabilities and quality, supply certainty and flexibility, and we will look to continue to expand those capabilities in the future,” said Mr. Haft. “We look forward to working with the Paine & Partners team, whose experience investing across the food and agribusiness value chain and resources will help us achieve our long-term potential as we continue to develop and expand our business.”
© 2013 PEPD • Private Equity’s Leading News Magazine • 3-21-13