John Kenney Joins TSG Consumer Partners

John Kenney has joined TSG Consumer Partners as a partner and managing director. He previously was with AEA Investors as co-head of the firm’s consumer product and retail investment practice. 



TSG Consumer Partners LLC (“TSG”), a private equity firm and leading investor in branded consumer products companies, has named John M. Kenney, who has 17 years experience in private equity consumer investing, as a Managing Director and Partner of the firm, it was announced today by Charles (“Chuck”) Esserman, President and CEO.


Mr. Kenney most recently was with AEA Investors LLC, a global private equity firm which he joined 10 years ago and where he had been co-head of AEA’s consumer product and retail investment practice.  Among others, he co-led AEA’s acquisition of and served on the boards of Burt’s Bees, the natural personal care products company, which was subsequently sold to Clorox Co., as well as Acosta Sales and Marketing, one of North America’s largest sales and marketing agencies serving the foodservice and grocery industries, and Tampico Beverages, the leading selling brand of refrigerated juice drinks.


“We are extremely pleased to have John join TSG,” said Mr. Esserman.  “His broad and successful background in private equity investment will complement the existing capabilities of our professional team, and contribute to the highly successful investment performance in the consumer branded products field our firm has enjoyed for over two decades.”


“TSG’s concentration on investing in high growth consumer branded products companies, along with its best-in-class track record and proven team, made my decision to join the firm very easy,” said Mr. Kenney.  “TSG provides an established position in a field where I have spent virtually my entire business career, along with the strength and flexibility that can assure its future growth.  I am honored to join TSG, and look forward with great anticipation to working with my new partners in realizing the many opportunities we see ahead.”


Prior to joining AEA, Mr. Kenney was a Principal at Investcorp International, where as a senior member of its North American Corporate Investment Team he also focused on consumer products and retail investments. Previously, Mr. Kenney was with Lazard Frères’ private equity investment vehicle, Centre Partners, and was also in the investment banking group of Donaldson, Lufkin & Jenrette in both M&A and raising capital for consumer products and retail companies.  He holds a B.S. from Boston College.


Mr. Kenney will join Managing Director and Partner Alex Panos in the New York office.  Among other responsibilities, Mr. Kenney will oversee the New York and East Coast origination activities for the firm.  Mr. Panos, a founding partner of the current partnership, will continue to be responsible for sourcing opportunities on a national basis.


About TSG Consumer Partners


TSG Consumer Partners L.L.C. is the leading private equity firm in the U.S. focused exclusively on the consumer sector.  TSG pioneered the use of private equity in high-growth, middle- market branded consumer companies.  TSG was also the first institutional investment fund to focus on investing in natural and organic foods companies as well as companies focused on ethnic foods, functional food and beverage categories, and orphan brands in the personal care and household sectors.  Along with its in-depth understanding of and experience within the consumer industry, TSG engages in a highly effective hands-on management approach that distinguishes the firm in attracting investments and building companies.  Since its inception in 1987, TSG’s branded consumer investment strategy has achieved returns of approximately 60 percent annually. 


TSG’s investments over the years include Famous Amos Chocolate Chip Cookies, Terra Chips, Mauna Loa macadamia nuts, Glaceau vitaminwater, Smart Balance Foods, PureOlogy hair care, and Smashbox Cosmetics, amongst others.