Carlyle-backed Acosta to expand Canadian reach with buy of Higgins Cohn

U.S. consumer goods marketing agency Acosta Inc has agreed to buy Higgins Cohn Brand Management, a natural foods sales company based in Woodbridge, Ontario. The financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed. Acosta said the deal, which is expected to close next month, will expand its reach in the natural and specialty sales channel in Canada. Headquartered in Jacksonville, Florida, Acosta is a portfolio company of U.S. private equity firm The Carlyle Group. Carlyle acquired the business from Thomas H. Lee Partners in July 2014.

PRESS RELEASE

Acosta to Acquire Higgins Cohn Brand Management

Acquisition broadens Natural/Specialty Sales reach in Canada

Acosta announced it has signed a definitive agreement to acquire Higgins Cohn Brand Management, the largest natural foods sales agency in Canada.
“Higgins Cohn is the leading natural foods agency in Canada representing many of the top natural product brands,” said Robert Hill, President & CEO of Acosta. “Higgins Cohn’s extensive experience, strong relationships and service excellence will enable us to expand our reach in the Natural/Specialty Sales channel.”

Acosta created a U.S. Natural/Specialty Sales channel in 2001 by partnering with top local and regional agencies specializing in natural and specialty foods. The team is comprised of experienced, dedicated associates who have spent their entire careers in the natural foods channel. Acosta Natural/Specialty Sales has grown to become the largest provider of integrated sales and marketing solutions to leading natural and specialty brands in every category across all retail channels.

“Our team is excited to become a part of Acosta’s culture focused on people, teamwork, trust and results,” commented Patrick Higgins, President, Higgins Cohn Brand Management. “We are aligning ourselves with experienced industry experts and providing best-in-class training opportunities for our associates. By joining forces with Acosta, we will be able to provide our clients and customers with enhanced capabilities and new resources to drive growth.”

The transaction is expected to close in March, 2015.

Source: Acosta Inc

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