PE-backed Red Collar acquires Hampshire Pet

Red Collar Pet Foods, which is backed by Arbor Investments, has acquired Joplin, Missouri-based Hampshire Pet Products LLC, a provider of baked and cold formed pet products. No financial terms were disclosed. Duff & Phelps Securities was sell-side financial adviser to Hampshire Pet on the transaction.


Franklin, TN – February 21, 2019

Red Collar Pet Foods (“Red Collar”) announced today the acquisition of Hampshire Pet Products, LLC (“Hampshire Pet”). Based in Joplin, Missouri, the company is a leading provider of baked and cold formed pet products and co-manufacturer of several of the nation’s leading branded pet treats. Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

Hampshire Pet will join Red Collar, a leading manufacturer of premium and mainstream private label pet food and treat products. With the strategic addition of Hampshire Pet to its portfolio, Red Collar expands its capabilities in the premium and super premium baked and cold formed treats category. The increased production capabilities will make Red Collar one of the largest private label and contract manufacturers of dog and cat treats in North America.

Commenting on the transaction, Red Collar President and CEO Chris Hamilton said, “We’re thrilled to welcome Hampshire Pet and its talented group of associates to the Red Collar family. The pet snack and treat market continues to grow at unprecedented rates and the Hampshire facility is one of the largest in the industry. Their commitment to food safety, quality and cutting-edge innovation make it a nimble, one stop manufacturing solution for brands and retailer partners alike.”

Red Collar is owned by Arbor Investments, a specialized private equity firm that focuses exclusively on acquiring premier companies in food, beverage and related industries. Arbor acquired the private label pet food and treats manufacturing business from Mars Petcare in December 2018 and re-branded the new company Red Collar Pet Foods.

Arbor Partner Chris Harned stated, “We are excited to add Hampshire Pet’s well-regarded pet treat franchise to Red Collar’s treat business. Based right across the border in Miami, Oklahoma, the two treat businesses have complementary manufacturing capabilities, similar agile innovation-driven cultures and great track records of exceeding customer expectations. We look forward to continued growth and development of our two-plant pet treat ‘center of excellence’ together with veteran leader Julie Larson, who will report to Chris Hamilton, President and CEO of Red Collar.”

Tony Lang, one of the Lang family owners stated, “The entire Hampshire team has built an impressive business with innovative products for the right brands and retailers, and we are grateful to them for their hard work for over a decade. On behalf of the Ainsworth Family and our partners at L Catterton, we want to thank the entire Hampshire Family for many years of hard work and a great partnership. We are excited for them as they enter this next chapter, and we believe Red Collar Pet Foods has the right people, tools and experience to support Hampshire’s continued growth.”

“Over the past 18 years, we have experienced tremendous growth by adhering to our core principles and building great partnerships with our customers” Julie Larson, CEO of Hampshire Pet Products said. “By joining Red Collar, we now have an opportunity to accelerate that growth further with the combined scale of our businesses offering even more comprehensive and innovative manufacturing solutions for our customers. We are truly excited about this next chapter and are committed to ensuring a seamless transition to Red Collar in the coming months.”

Kirkland & Ellis served as Arbor’s legal counsel in connection with the transaction. Sheppard Mullin Richter & Hampton LLP served as legal counsel and Duff & Phelps Securities, LLC served as exclusive sell side financial advisor to Hampshire Pet on the transaction.

About Red Collar Pet Foods
We are pet people. And to us, pets are family. That’s why we believe they all deserve great food. Wholesome, balanced nutrition grounded in the best food science in every bag and bowl. Why is our food so good? It’s made right here in the U.S. from quality ingredients in factories that meet the highest pet food safety standards. We think you’ll be proud to put your brand on the food we make. Our enduring commitment to pets and their people means Red Collar is a partner you can trust. We nourish some of the best four-legged friends around. We hope some of them are yours.

About Hampshire Pet Products
For over 18 years, we have been providing the best baked products to the pet food industry along with cutting-edge and innovative ideas. We proudly produce baked and cold formed treats which meet the highest industry quality standards as well as SQF Certified Level II food safety standards. Our commitment to innovation has allowed us to lead the industry in new product introductions.

About Arbor Investments
Founded in 1999 with offices in Chicago and New York, Arbor Investments is a specialized private equity firm that focuses exclusively on acquiring premier companies in the food, beverage and related industries. To date, the firm has acquired or invested in over 60 food & beverage companies in North America.