North Castle Partners said Friday it has sold Flatout Inc. to T. Marzetti Company, a subsidiary of Lancaster Colony Corp. The purchase price was $92 million. Other sellers include Glencoe Capital. Saline, Mich.-based Flatout makes and markets a flatbread and flatbread products. Lincoln International advised North Castle.
GREENWICH, Conn. and SALINE, Mich., March 13, 2015 /PRNewswire/ — North Castle Partners, its co-investors and Glencoe Capital announced today that they have sold Flatout, Inc. (“Flatout”) a leading manufacturer and marketer of highly differentiated, premium and better-for-you flatbreads and flatbread products, to T. Marzetti Company, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Lancaster Colony Corporation (Nasdaq: LANC) for a purchase price of approximately $92 million on a cash free, debt free basis. For North Castle Partners, a leading private equity firm focused on consumer businesses that promote Healthy, Active and Sustainable Living, the transaction represents another successful exit in the nutrition sector.
“The growth of Flatout and its sale to T. Marzetti Company is another example of North Castle’s strategy to partner with accomplished entrepreneurial management teams to build high-growth brands that are of significant value to strategic buyers,” said Lou Marinaccio, a North Castle Managing Director. “By leveraging our prior experience with nutrition and food & beverage companies, such as Naked Juice, EAS, and Atkins Nutritionals, we believe that North Castle in partnership with Flatout’s leadership team developed a company, brand, and product portfolio that are well positioned for growth for many years to come.”
“Providing consumers with healthy/better-for-you nutrition options is vital to North Castle’s mission to build industry leading companies in the Healthy, Active and Sustainable Living market. We believe the success of Flatout illustrates the benefits that our focused approach provides management teams as we partner to build great companies that address the needs of today’s consumers – in this case, for tasty, nutritious and convenient foods. We are proud to have played an integral role in the development of Flatout, which is representative of the broader value creation that we are driving across our entire portfolio,” said North Castle’s Managing Partner Chip Baird.
“North Castle’s experience in the food & beverage and nutrition markets, coupled with its brand building and operating capabilities were instrumental in helping us grow Flatout,” said Stacey Marsh, Co-Founder and President. “I am excited for Flatout to be part of the T. Marzetti family as we continue to drive the growth of the brand and continue our history of innovation in the category.”
“As a leading private equity firm that has focused on consumer businesses that promote health and wellness for more than 15 years, we continue to look for opportunities across the Healthy, Active and Sustainable Living market to leverage our knowledge, network and experience in building market leaders like Flatout,” concluded Mr. Marinaccio.
Lincoln International served as financial advisor and Morrison Cohen and Jaffe Raitt Heuer & Weiss provided legal counsel to North Castle and the company in the transaction.
About North Castle Partners
North Castle Partners is a leading private equity firm focused on investments in consumer-driven product and service businesses that promote Healthy, Active, and Sustainable Living. North Castle is a hands-on, value-added investor in high-growth, middle market companies in the (i) beauty & personal care, (ii) consumer health, (iii) fitness, recreation & sports, (iv) home & leisure and (v) nutrition sectors, among others. North Castle’s current portfolio includes such well-known brands as Curves International/Jenny Craig, Palladio Beauty Group, Mineral Fusion, Red Door Spas, Performance Bicycles, Octane Fitness, Ibex Outdoor Clothing, and Doctor’s Best. Prior portfolio company holdings include Atkins Nutritionals, Contigo, Cascade Helmets, Bora-Bora Organic Foods, gloProfessional, Equinox Fitness, EAS, Enzymatic Therapy, CRC Health Group, Doctor’s Dermatologic Formula, Naked Juice Company, and Avalon Organics / Alba Botanicals. North Castle and its operating executives and advisors partner with management to bring a wide range of strategic and operational capabilities, as well as an extensive knowledge base and network to build world-class companies. North Castle is headquartered in Greenwich, CT. For more information, visit www.northcastlepartners.com.
Flatout is a leading manufacturer and marketer of highly differentiated, premium and better-for-you flatbreads and flatbread products sold under its own brand to a diverse and multi-channel customer base. Since it was founded 15 years ago by Stacey and Mike Marsh, Flatout has continued to pioneer the rapidly growing flatbread category with its on-trend and innovative products offering extraordinary taste, superior nutrition and convenient versatility across multiple consumption occasions throughout the day. As a result, Flatout has cultivated a loyal consumer following and garnered numerous awards from healthy magazine editors and bloggers. Flatout is headquartered in Saline, MI. For more information, visit www.flatoutbread.com.
About Glencoe Capital and the Michigan Opportunities Fund
Founded in 1993, Glencoe Capital is a private equity firm focused on lead-sponsored acquisitions and growth equity investments in lower middle-market companies. A participant in the Invest Michigan! initiative established by the state of Michigan in 2008, Glencoe’s Michigan Opportunities Fund represents a groundbreaking partnership between public and private sectors, leveraging equity capital to make lead-sponsored acquisitions and growth equity investments in companies in Michigan or with the prospect of expanding operations into the state. The firm has offices in Chicago and in Birmingham, Mich. More information is at www.glencap.com.
About Lancaster Colony
Lancaster Colony Corporation is a manufacturer and marketer of specialty food products for the retail and foodservice markets.