The Livekindly Co., a US-based “collective” of plant-based start-ups, has added another brand to its portfolio – meat-alternative brand Oumph in Sweden, which is owned by Food for Progress.
No financials details behind the transaction were provided by The Livekindly Co., which was formed earlier this year with private-equity firm Blue Horizon Ventures as its principal shareholder and a number of food industry executives at its helm, including former Unilever man Kees Kruythoff, who is chairman and chief executive.
Located in the US state of Delaware, The Livekindly Co. had already notched up a couple of acquisitions: The Fry Family Food Co. in South Africa and LikeMeat in Germany. The Livekindly Co. also holds a stake in Puris Holdings in Minneapolis, Minnesota.
The Livekindly Co. said in a statement the purchase of Oumph “underlines its ambition to spearhead a global food transformation with environmentally-friendly meat alternatives”.
Kruythoff said: “The LiveKindly Co. is leading a movement to build a more sustainable future through our portfolio of brands – who are all creating delicious healthy plant-based food – and our ecosystem of mission-aligned partners. Bringing Oumph into the Livekindly family was a natural next step for us.”
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Houlihan Lokey acted as financial adviser to Food for Progress in negotiating the transaction.
Food for Progress was founded in 2014 and launched Oumph in Sweden a year later.
The company was formed by Anders Wallerman and Anna-Kajsa Lidell. Wallerman is the son of the family behind Ecab Invest, a business set up 30 years ago in meat production. Lidell was an entrepreneur who had developed a brand called Beat, using beans to create vegan products. Wallerman had already started supplying non-meat products but the two decided to work together on a business eschewing the use of animals and focusing instead on plant-based food.
Oumph grew to become the largest brand in the Food For Progress portfolio, alongside Beat. Oumph products are available across the Nordic countries, the UK and most recently in the Netherlands.
Wallerman added: “Since co-founding Oumph five years ago, it’s been an amazing journey to date and I’m incredibly proud of the work our team has done in creating exceptionally tasty plant-based food. Our mission from day one has been to get more people eating plant-based food, which is a healthier, more sustainable way forward for the environment.”
The Livekindly Co.’s founders include Roger Lienhard, who sits on the board of directors and is also the founder of Blue Horizon, and Jodi Monelle, the CEO and founder of Canada-based Livekindly Media, which has now become part of the overall business.
Former Unilever man Mick Van Ettinger is the company’s chief marketing officer, while Aldo Uva, who has previously worked at Nestle and Ferrero, is the chief operating officer and head of research and development.