Food52 to acquire Schoolhouse for $48m

Food52, which is backed by TCG, has agreed to acquire Portland, Oregon-based Schoolhouse, a lighting and lifestyle goods company.

Food52, which is backed by TCG, has agreed to acquire Portland, Oregon-based Schoolhouse, a lighting and lifestyle goods company. The purchase price is about $48 million.

PRESS RELEASE

NEW YORK, N.Y., December, 14, 2021 — Food52, the premier cooking and home brand, announced today that it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Schoolhouse, the Portland, OR–based lighting and lifestyle goods company, for approximately $48MM in cash and stock, and that it has also raised an incremental investment. Both the acquisition and investment are being funded by TCG and will triple Food52’s valuation since TCG made its initial majority investment in 2019. The Schoolhouse acquisition is anticipated to close before the end of the year, subject to customary closing conditions.

“The partnership with Amanda [Hesser] and the team at Food52 has been fantastic,” said Mike Kerns, a General Partner at TCG, who is on the Food52 Board of Directors. “The company’s performance has exceeded our expectations, and their prospects for the future in this massive category are brighter than ever. We are thrilled to be doubling down on our investment.”

Food52, which has grown its revenue 2.5x since 2019, will use the capital to fund brick-and-mortar retail, a pantry brand, and the build-out of its creative studios. The brand will be ubiquitous in the retail and media landscapes, a result of its pioneering approach to commerce, content and community.

By adding Schoolhouse, Food52 is advancing its strategy to be the next-generation cooking and home company and its mission to help people enjoy life’s most important pleasures – food, home and connection to others. Since Schoolhouse was founded by Brian Faherty in 2003, it has been renowned for its modern heirlooms that are manufactured in America. Schoolhouse President Sara Fritsch will lead the company into its next chapter with Food52 Founder and CEO Amanda Hesser and Food52 President Claire Chambers.

Food52 plans to preserve the Schoolhouse brand, retain its existing jobs, and keep the company’s roots in the heart of Portland, while expanding its product assortment and storytelling across Schoolhouse’s channels. From iconic lighting to exclusive homewares such as clocks, prints, and rugs, many of Schoolhouse’s products are designed, manufactured, and fulfilled within the walls of its century-old brick factory. Food52 is going to keep it that way.

“We’re admirers — and longtime customers — of Schoolhouse, and we feel a powerful kinship with their mission,” said Hesser. “They’ve been helping people find joy and comfort in their homes for nearly two decades. We’re also excited to be part of the community they’ve built in Portland, a city known for its bounty of creators and innovative companies.”

With Schoolhouse, Food52 will acquire valuable manufacturing, retail, and design experience, and expand its footprint in home categories such as lighting, soft goods, wallpaper, and hardware. Six months ago, Food52 purchased Dansk, and its revitalization of the heritage home brand is well underway. And after seeing triple-digit growth of home goods in its Shop, Food52 launched its Home52 vertical in 2020.

“Very few brands are as obsessed with thoughtful design, quality products, and empathetic service as we are, and Food52 is definitely one of them,” said Fritsch. “We share with them a passion for living well at home and for serving our employees and community. With our shared values guiding us, we look forward to chasing our collective potential.”

Lowenstein Sandler LLP is representing Food52 in its acquisition of Schoolhouse, Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP represented TCG in its investment in Food52, and Stoel Rives LLP is representing Schoolhouse.