US private-equity firm Brynwood Partners is reportedly working with advisers on the possible sale of local baking-products supplier Hometown Food Company.
According to Reuters, Brynwood has hired US-based investment bank Houlihan Lokey as an advisor.
Just Food approached Brynwood chairman and CEO Henk Hartong III for comment but had not received a response at the time of writing.
Hometown Food Company, based in Chicago, was formed by Brynwood in June 2018 to acquire a portfolio of brands from JM Smucker.
In January last year, Brynwood added to the business with the acquisition of pancake and waffle mix brand Birch Benders from US manufacturer Sovos Brands.
In an interview with Just Food conducted before Christmas, Hartong III said Brynwood was “actively trying to sell companies in our portfolio” without disclosing the identity of the assets.
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The buy-out house closed its ninth – and largest fund – last year, raising $750m.
Brynwood has six food and drinks companies in its portfolio. As well as Hometown, the company also owns businesses including Buitoni Food Company, Harvest Hill Beverage Company and West Madison Foods.
The private-equity firm set up West Madison Foods last year when it bought the Marie’s salad dressings brand and the Dean’s dip business from US manufacturer Ventura Foods.
Asked in the interview how many investments Brynwood could hold at once, Hartong III said: “It depends on the size of the businesses. With our management, we certainly have capacity because we’re out actively looking for new platforms and, in Brynwood IX, we have our first [investment] with West Madison. We hope to have one to two more done within the next six to nine months. We have a couple in our sights that we think we can get done.
“I’d say I’m also looking to divest a few of our businesses, so I think, depending on the size of each of the platforms, eight is probably the upper end. In our model, you got to cover your companies. It’s very rare that we have everybody in the office. Typically, we’re out on the road visiting our customers or our factories or corporate offices and so forth.”