Newly formed Shoreline Equity clinches first deal for food distributor Mr. Greens

The Miami produce and dairy distributor has grown revenue to approximately $100 million, a source said.

Shoreline Equity Partners’ first-ever platform Mr. Greens expects to continue its fast pace of growth through further consolidation of the food distribution market, an executive of the newly-formed firm said.

After raising $300 million for its debut private equity fund, Jacksonville, Florida-based Shoreline invested in Mr. Greens, the firm announced Friday.

When Chairman Peter Politis bought the Miami-based produce, dairy and dry goods distributor in 2011, Mr. Greens was earning approximately $2 million in revenue, a source familiar with the matter told PE Hub. Today Mr. Greens generates about $100 million in top line and is growing at 20 to 30 percent annually, the source said.

The food distributor stood out because it offered order and delivery outside normal business hours, providing its services 24/7, 365 days a year, said Shoreline Co-Founder and Managing Partner Mike Hand, who led the transaction.

“Peter [Politis] has an incredible entrenchment with his customers,” Hand told PE Hub. “He does things people don’t think can be done. He takes the long game. Peter and [Mr. Greens CEO] Nick Politis are really special.”

SunTrust Robinson Humphrey’s Michael Stollmack brought the deal opportunity to Hand, informing him that Mr. Greens wanted to consolidate the market, but he couldn’t initially engage in formal deal discussions, Hand said: “We didn’t have a private equity fund at that point.”

On Jan. 7, Shoreline Equity Partners announced the final close of its inaugural fund, raising $300 million and surpassing its initial $250 million target.

Hand, who formerly co-founded middle-market private equity group PNC Riverarch Capital, said Mr. Greens will seek to grow through additional M&A.

“Shoreline has a couple of add-ons for Mr. Greens that are getting very close,” Hand said.

Nuveen, Private Advisors, NXT Capital, investors affiliated with The Hillman Company and Mr. Greens management co-invested with Shoreline in Mr. Greens.

Shoreline is a generalist investor, focusing on the food and beverage, services, maintenance repair and testing industries. The firm makes equity investments of as much as $100 million through buyouts, recapitalizations and corporate divestitures. It targets businesses with enterprise values of $25 million to $250 million.

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