Panos eyes next phase following sale

Panos eyes 'next phase' following sale

Private-equity firm Hammond, Kennedy, Whitney & Co. (HKW) has closed the acquisition of US group Panos Brands.

Panos Brands manufactures speciality, natural and organic grocery products under brands including Ka-Me, Sesmark, Mi-del and Soy Kaas. 

"The Panos opportunity met all the key criteria for an HKW investment," said HKW partner John Carsello.  "The company participates in the attractive health and wellness niche of the food industry and has an excellent track record of growth. Most importantly, the proven, impressive executive team has created a results-oriented environment that is a tremendous fit with the HKW culture."

Steven Grossman, president and CEO of Panos, said he expected to develop the business under HKW's ownership. "We are excited to move forward with HKW as Panos embarks on its next phase of growth. HKW's collaborative approach, vision for value creation, and their reputation as a trusted partner resonated very well with our management team."

Financial details of the transaction were not disclosed.  High Road Capital Partners Fund paid US$22m for Panos on a cash- and debt-free basis when it acquired the group from Wessanen in 2010. Since then, Panos completed one bolt-on acquisition when, with High Road's backing, it acquired Ry-Con Specialty Foods in 2012. 

"We acquired Panos as a spin-out of a European company and in our five years of ownership, helped build a stand-alone infrastructure that allowed Panos to achieve significant growth," said Bob Fitzsimmons, High Road's managing partner. "Panos's revenues grew by over 50% and EBITDA grew by over 250% during the course of our ownership."