Paine & Partners Backs SGF Produce Holdings

Buyout shop Paine & Partners has made an investment in SGF Produce Holdings the parent entity of Sunrise Growers~Frozsun Foods. As part of the deal, Paine & Partners is taking the stake previously held by Sun Capital Partners, according to a press release. Terms of the deal were not released.


Paine & Partners, LLC (“Paine & Partners”), a global private equity investment firm focused on investing in food and agribusiness, today announced that it has made an investment in SGF Produce Holdings, LLC (“Sunrise” or the “Company”), the parent entity of Sunrise Growers~Frozsun Foods, which was an affiliated portfolio company of Sun Capital Partners, Inc. (“Sun Capital”). Following the closing, Sunrise will no longer be an affiliated portfolio company of Sun Capital.

Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

Sunrise is a leading value-added frozen fruit processor and marketer. The Company, headquartered in Placentia, California, was founded in 1977 and operates high quality processing facilities in Oxnard and Santa Maria, California, which are strategically located in the leading strawberry producing regions of the United States. Sunrise’s products include frozen strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, raspberries, cherries, peaches and fruit blends in multiple product specifications and packaging configurations. The Company is a leader in the growing markets for retail frozen fruit and foodservice frozen strawberries, and it also markets fresh strawberries to leading retailers throughout the U.S. Sunrise’s consumer products are sold primarily under customers’ private label brands and also under the Sunrise Growers brand name.

Edward Haft will continue to lead Sunrise as President and Chief Executive Officer, along with the rest of Sunrise’s senior management team.

Kevin Schwartz, a founding Partner at Paine & Partners, said, “We are excited about our investment in Sunrise, a leader in the retail and foodservice frozen fruit markets that is well positioned to capitalize on the growing demand for healthy food options and quality frozen fruit products. We have been impressed by the Company’s capabilities and the strong strategic relationships it has with its grower and customer partners. Together with the Sunrise management team, we have identified opportunities to enhance the Company’s product offerings, including expansion into new fruit categories and markets. We look forward to continuing to work with Ed Haft and the rest of the Sunrise management team to execute on these exciting growth opportunities.”

Edward Haft, President and CEO of Sunrise, said, “With Paine & Partners, we will continue to build on our diverse portfolio of quality products, state-of-the-art processing facilities and industry leading food safety practices. Our strong relationships with our leading retail and foodservice customers and grower partners are due to our product capabilities and quality, supply certainty and flexibility, and we will look to continue to expand those capabilities in the future. We look forward to working with the Paine & Partners team, whose experience investing across the food and agribusiness value chain and resources will help us achieve our long-term potential as we continue to develop and expand our business.”

About SGF Produce Holdings, LLCSunrise Growers~Frozsun Foods is the leading strawberry processor in the U.S. and one of the top marketers of frozen fruit and fresh strawberries. Recognized for their award-winning private label retail and foodservice programs, the Company is vertically integrated allowing control of product throughout the supply chain. From specialty toppings to beverage bases and smoothies and a full line of innovative frozen fruit products, Sunrise Growers~Frozsun Foods services a wide range of retail, industrial and foodservice customers.

About Paine & Partners, LLCPaine & Partners provides equity capital for management buyouts, going private transactions, and company expansion and growth programs. Paine & Partners engages exclusively in friendly transactions developed in cooperation with a company’s management, board of directors and shareholders. The firm currently makes investments through its $1.2 billion fund, Paine & Partners Capital Fund III, L. P. and related entities.

Paine & Partners focuses on the food and agribusiness industry globally, and its principals, through a predecessor fund, have made successful strategic investments in Seminis, then the world’s leading global developer, producer and marketer of vegetable and fruit seeds; and Advanta Netherlands Holdings BV, at the time, the largest independent agronomic seed company in the world. Paine & Partners also invested in Icicle Seafoods, a leading producer, harvester and processer of salmon, pollock, halibut, cod, crab and other seafood products with operations in North and South America and sales globally. Paine & Partners’ most recent investments include Eurodrip, a global manufacturer and supplier of drip irrigation solutions; Verdesian Life Sciences, a U.S.-based plant health and nutrition investment platform; Scanbio Marine Group, a leading Norwegian producer of fish protein concentrate, fish meal, and fish oil; and Costa Group, Australia’s largest integrated grower, packer and marketer of fresh fruits and vegetables. The complex investment opportunities in today’s rapidly evolving agribusiness environment play to the strengths of Paine & Partners’ differentiated approach.