Cornell Capital-backed INW buys Capstone Nutrition from Brightstar

INW, which is backed by Cornell Capital, has acquired Ogden, Utah-based Capstone Nutrition, a maker of nutrition and wellness products.

INW, which is backed by Cornell Capital, has acquired Ogden, Utah-based Capstone Nutrition, a maker of nutrition and wellness products. The seller was Brightstar Capital Partners. No financial terms were disclosed.

PRESS RELEASE

DALLAS and OGDEN, Utah, June 8, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — INW | Innovations in Nutrition + Wellness (“INW”), a leader in custom R&D, manufacturing and marketing support solutions for global brands that serve the fast-growing nutrition and wellness industry, today announced that it has acquired Capstone Nutrition (“Capstone”), a best-in-class developer and manufacturer of high-quality nutrition and wellness products, from Brightstar Capital Partners (“Brightstar”). Terms of the private transaction were not disclosed.

Founded in 1989 and headquartered in Ogden, Utah, Capstone is a full-service developer and manufacturer for established and emerging wellness brands across the specialty health, functional food, immunity support, digestive health, holistic health, fit and active lifestyle, skincare and pet care markets. Focused on capsules, tablets and powder products, its state-of-the-art, 300,000-square-foot manufacturing facility is one of the largest in the nutrition industry. Reflecting its differentiated commitment to quality, Capstone has received several third-party awards recognizing its operational excellence and is certified by all relevant international regulatory bodies.

Jared Leishman, Capstone’s current Chief Executive Officer, has been named CEO of the combined company. Mr. Leishman brings more than 15 years of experience in the dietary supplement industry, having previously served as both the Chief Operating Officer and Chief Financial Officer of Capstone prior to his appointment as CEO in 2016. Cornell Capital and affiliated investors acquired INW in March 2021, with a goal of adding complementary businesses like Capstone to build a scaled and well-diversified integrated solutions provider in the modern health and wellness industry.

“This transaction positions INW as a leading, full-service platform in this fragmented and high-demand segment of the health and wellness market,” said Justine Cheng, Partner at Cornell Capital. “Capstone’s expertise across a variety of product forms and ingredients, highly flexible infrastructure and 30-year history of quality and efficiency as a trusted brand partner are impressive. We look forward to partnering with Jared and the rest of Capstone’s experienced team to share best practices and drive continued growth at INW across an expanded operational and customer footprint.”

“We are excited to join the INW family and accelerate growth by leveraging our innovative capabilities, operational flexibility and blue-chip customer relationships as part of this expanding global platform,” Mr. Leishman said. “Combining our two complementary businesses will continue to strengthen INW as a world-class turnkey service provider of differentiated products across the vitamins, minerals and supplements categories. I am confident that together we can enhance our position as a leading provider of innovative, customer-focused solutions for the modern health and wellness industry.”

“This strategic combination with INW fulfills the aspirations Brightstar had for Capstone when we acquired the Company in 2019,” said Andrew Weinberg, Founder and CEO of Brightstar. “We are proud to have played a role in Capstone’s growth and are confident that INW is the right partner to continue and expand its position as an innovative industry leader.”

Guggenheim Securities, LLC is acting as financial advisor to INW and Cornell Capital, and Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP is acting as legal advisor. Jefferies LLC and BMO Capital Markets Group are acting as financial advisors to Capstone, and Fredrikson & Byron P.A. and Kirkland & Ellis LLP are acting as legal advisors.

About INW | Innovations in Nutrition + Wellness
INW stands at the crossroads of change in the nutrition and wellness industry, blending science and innovation with safety and quality to set a new standard of leadership in nutritional and personal care manufacturing. Delivering operational excellence from product R & D to expert manufacturing and packaging to efficient delivery, the company provides an unmatched quality product and packaging innovation, from concept to launch to global brands. They offer a diversity of product forms across powders, solid dose, liquids/gel packs, personal care, and more across its multi-site network. Visit inw-group.com to learn more.

Capstone Nutrition
Capstone Nutrition is the leading pure play, turnkey developer and manufacturer of high-quality health and wellness supplements. With its advanced manufacturing capabilities, Capstone is a one-stop shop for strategic partners in the nutrition industry, led by experienced and dedicated scientists and trusted industry professionals. Since 1989, Capstone has been formulating, developing, manufacturing and packaging a wide range of capsules, tablets, and powders for customers around the globe. Headquartered at a state-of-the-art facility in Ogden, Utah, Capstone is known for exceptional quality and market-leading product development. The company maintains the highest industry certifications recognizing its exceptional manufacturing standards, including Australia’s Therapeutic Goods Administration (“TGA”), NSF GMP, and NSF for Sport certification. For more information, please visit www.capstonenutrition.com.

About Cornell Capital
Cornell Capital LLC is a U.S.-based private investment firm with over $6.0 billion of AUM and offices in New York and Hong Kong. Partnering with strong, entrepreneurial management teams, the firm takes a value-oriented approach to investing across the consumer, financial and industrial sectors. Founder and Senior Partner Henry Cornell, who served as the Vice Chairman of Goldman Sachs’ Merchant Banking Division prior to founding Cornell Capital in 2013, leads a highly-seasoned senior leadership team with decades of shared investing experience. For more information, visit www.cornellcapllc.com.

About Brightstar Capital Partners
Brightstar Capital Partners is a middle market private equity firm focused on partnering with exceptional families, founders, entrepreneurs and management teams where the firm is ideally positioned to drive value creation. Brightstar employs an operationally intensive approach that leverages its extensive experience and relationship network to help companies reach their full potential. For more information please visit www.brightstarcp.com.