Boulder Specialty Brands has signed a definitive agreement to acquire GFA Brands, the fast growing US food company which produces among others Smart Balance and Earth Balance heart-healthy brands.
Boulder said that GFA Holdings’ shareholders, who include TSG Consumer Partners, will receive approximately US$465m in cash at closing, less amounts to be paid for certain commitments, estimated to be approximately $14m, net of income tax benefit. As part of the transaction, Boulder will assume certain tax benefits with an estimated present value of approximately $15m, the company added.
Boulder Specialty Brands also announced that it intends to change its name to Smart Balance, upon completion of the acquisition.

Stephen B. Hughes, chairman and CEO of Boulder Specialty Brands, said: “The acquisition of GFA Brands represents a significant step in our strategy to be a leading marketer of healthy and organic brands targeting two of the most powerful trends in the global food and beverage market. GFA is the ideal platform for Boulder to leverage our management team’s skills and expertise in the categories in which Smart Balance competes today as well as our brand-building experience.”

Hughes paid tribute to the work of GFA Brands’ CEO Bob Harris and his team in building up the company. “We look forward to continuing to expand Smart Balance and Earth Balance into a wide range of food and beverage categories,” Hughes said.
GFA’s product line includes margarine, popcorn, mayonnaise, peanut butter and cooking oils, as well as natural and organic foods marketed under the Earth Balance brand. In addition, GFA’s brands include Smart Beat, Nucoa, Fanning’s, H-O and Spin Blend heart-healthy food products.