US snacks specialist Utz Quality Foods has acquired rival Inventure Foods in a US$165m deal.

Pennsylvania-based Utz, said to be the largest privately-held and family-managed branded salty snack manufacturer and marketer in the US, said it is “tremendously excited about the opportunity”.

Utz is a snacks business with brands such as Bachman, Zapp’s and Dirty, while Phoenix-Arizona-based Inventure makes company branded and licensed snacks such as Boulder Canyon Foods, Jamba, Nathan’s Famous and TGI Friday’s.

The $165m purchase price includes the assumption of approximately $75m of debt and debt-like items, net of cash, around $8m of the company’s estimated closing costs and $3m due to equity award holders. 

Dylan Lissette, chief executive officer of Utz, said: “The company’s speciality snack food products and brands, as well as its geographic footprint, customer relationships and distribution strengths, are highly complementary to our business and we look forward to continuing Inventure’s strong heritage of innovation in both healthy and indulgent snacking. 

“We have also been extremely impressed with the team at Inventure, and look forward to working together going forward.”

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In July last year, Inventure, after a period of running up losses, launched a “strategic” and “financial” review of its operations. In March this year, the company announced the sale of its Fresh Frozen Foods arm to fellow US vegetable supplier The Pictsweet Company. Last month, Inventure struck a deal to offload its frozen foods business to Oregon Potato Company.

Reflecting on the sale to Utz, Terry McDaniel, the CEO of Inventure, said: “This transaction is the result of diligent analysis and thoughtful strategic deliberations by our board of directors and the result of the strategic and financial review we initiated in July 2016. 

“Our board, with the advice of independent advisors, determined that this transaction will deliver immediate and certain cash value to our stockholders and new opportunities for our snack brands.”