AUA Private Equity buys TruFood Mfg


AUA Private Equity Partners LLC said June 18 that it acquired the assets of TruFood Mfg Inc. Financial terms weren’t announced. TruFood is contract manufacturer of branded and private-label nutrition bars, protein bars, chocolate moulded products, and baked goods.

PRESS RELEASE

NEW YORK, June 18, 2019 /PRNewswire/ — AUA Private Equity Partners, LLC (“AUA Private Equity”) is pleased to announce it has acquired the assets of TruFood Mfg., Inc., a leading snack food contract manufacturer. AOG, LLC d/b/a TruFood Manufacturing (“TruFood” or “Company”) will formulate and manufacture a full range of products including nutrition bars, baked bars, protein bars, chocolate moulded products, and granola products for its customer base of premier consumer packaged goods companies and retailers.

David Benyaminy, Partner of AUA Private Equity said, “We welcome TruFood as the newest company in our portfolio. TruFood will be a leading manufacturer in the growing snacking and nutrition bar segments and this acquisition is a complement to our growing portfolio of food manufacturers. We see great growth opportunities in this industry and our strategic acquisition of TruFood will not only enhance the AUA portfolio but support TruFood’s long-term success.”

AUA intends to bring a number of resources including capital, operational expertise and enhanced management depth to allow TruFood to better service its customers through a broader portfolio of product capabilities, more robust research and development and a stronger balance sheet, resulting in greater growth potential.

To increase the strength of the prior company’s senior management, in addition to retaining current CEO Pete Tsudis, AUA Private Equity engaged the expertise of industry veterans Ted Schouten, who will serve as President and Brad Balkovec, who will serve as Chief Financial Officer. In addition, the Company has added Martin Frech, who brings extensive experience and long tenures with Mondelez and Hershey’s, to the TruFood Board of Directors.

“TruFood is a highly-respected company and industry leader with world-class manufacturing facilities and a customer base consisting of leading CPG companies,” added Kyce Chihi, Managing Director at AUA Private Equity. “We look forward to driving growth through R&D and new product development, expanding customer relationships and implementing productivity improvements.”

TruFood President Ted Schouten said, “AUA Private Equity’s commitment to TruFood is a testament to the Company’s potential and the strong foundation that Pete built. TruFood is now positioned to enter the second half of 2019 in a stronger financial position and poised for growth. We are excited to work with the Company’s valued partners—its customers and suppliers—supported by TruFood’s top-notch team of employees.”

The AUA Private Equity deal team was led by Partner David Benyaminy, Managing Director Kyce Chihi and Vice President Jack Lin. Legal advice was provided by McDermott Will & Emery and Mandelbaum Salsburg.

About AUA Private Equity Partners, LLC
AUA Private Equity is a New York based, operationally-focused, lower middle-market investment firm providing strategic capital to companies in the consumer products and services sectors with a particular focus on family-owned businesses or companies benefiting from the growth of the U.S. Hispanic population. AUA Private Equity makes equity investments of $20 to $75 million in companies that generate in excess of $5 million in EBITDA. For more information on AUA Private Equity, please visit www.auaequity.com.

About TruFood Mfg., Inc.
Founded in 1985, TruFood is a leading contract manufacturer of branded and private-label nutrition bars, protein bars, chocolate moulded products, and baked goods. These products are sold at club, grocery, drug, convenience, and department stores worldwide. TruFood has a large presence on the East Coast with over 350,000 sq. ft. of state-of-the-art manufacturing facilities and continues to grow through its strong reputation for manufacturing high quality snack products for its marquee customer base.