US investment company Questor Partners Fund has agreed to acquire Chef Solutions, the US non-airline food business of German airline Lufthansa.

Chef Solutions, which operates in the US and Canada, has three business divisions providing outsourced manufacturing and distribution of perishable food products, such as salads and baked goods, under such brand names as Orval Kent, Pennant, Yoder’s and La Francaise, for retail stores, restaurant chains and foodservice companies.

Chef Solutions operates 14 facilities in North America, has approximately 2,600 employees and generated revenue in 2003 of approximately US$530m. The terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

“Questor’s experience in turning non-core subsidiaries of larger corporations into successful, high performing stand-alone businesses makes this a natural transaction for us,” said Michael Madden, the principal of Questor Management Company who was involved in the transaction.

“Lufthansa has decided to focus its foodservice subsidiary on airline catering. We believe Chef Solutions operates in a particularly appealing sector of the food industry and the business offers significant growth potential as Americans increasingly turn to prepared foods and other home meal replacements to make their busy lives more convenient. Our focus will be to provide superior customer service, world class operational effectiveness, and innovative new products for our customers,” Madden added.