PE-backed Wythe Will Merges with Tzetzo

Wythe Will Distributing, a portfolio company of Slate Capital Group, has merged with Tzetzo Bros. The combined company will be called Wythe Will Tzetzo. Terms of the deal were not released. Buffalo, NY-based Tzetzo is a provider of national branded, unbranded, and private label confectionery products. Williamsburg, Va.-based Wythe Will is a distributor of branded and private label packaged gourmet food and confections. Slate Capital will hold a controlling stake in the combined company. Additional equity investment and mezzanine financing for the deal came from Triangle Capital Corporation and Centerfield Capital Partners. M&T Bank, Fifth Third Bank and First Niagara Bank provided senior debt financing.

PRESS RELEASE

Wythe Will Distributing (“Wythe Will”), a portfolio company of Slate Capital Group, and Tzetzo Bros. (“Tzetzo”) are pleased to announce that the two companies have merged. The combined company will be called Wythe Will Tzetzo (the “Company”). The merger combines two leading businesses, each with extensive histories in the packaging and distribution of confectionery products and specialty foods, into one business having annual revenues of over $200 million.

The managements of Wythe Will and Tzetzo are teaming up to run the operations of the Company and execute its strategic growth plan. Gordon Angles, whose role as CEO of Wythe Will spans over thirty years, will be the CEO of the Company, and Keith McDaniel, who has been at Tzetzo for approximately twenty years, will be the President of the Company. Members of the Tzetzo family, including Steve Tzetzo and Chris Tzetzo, will continue in their roles of operational and sales supervision, respectively, while Rod Hogan, CFO of Wythe Will, is assuming responsibility for the financial oversight of the Company with the support of Tom Tzetzo.

Commenting on the strategic rationale for this combination, Gordon Angles said “Bringing these two companies together makes tremendous sense, particularly given the opportunity for increased customer service through the expanded offering of complementary products and services and through increased geographic coverage. We are excited about the road ahead.” Steve Tzetzo added “The similar cultures and extensive histories of these two companies create a terrific fit for continued growth. We are proud to be partnering Tzetzo with Wythe Will.”

Slate Capital Group has rolled its equity interest in Wythe Will into the Company and will be the controlling equity holder of the Company. Parker Davis of Slate Capital, who has served as Chairman of Wythe Will over the past three years, will serve as Chairman of the Company. The Tzetzo family will continue to own a significant equity stake in the Company. These owners are welcoming additional equity investment and mezzanine financing from Triangle Capital Corporation (NYSE: TCAP), Spring Capital Partners, and Centerfield Capital Partners. M&T Bank led a syndicate, including Fifth Third Bank and First Niagara Bank, in making senior debt financing available.

About Wythe Will Distributing
Wythe Will Distributing is a value-added distributor of branded and private label packaged gourmet food and confections. Based in Williamsburg, VA, Wythe Will is known for sourcing high quality, hard to find products for its alternative retail, premium grocery, and hospitality customers. Established in 1961, the Company has grown to be one of the largest and most reputable players in the specialty food distribution category. Wythe Will offers its customers a selection of approximately 4,700 everyday SKUs from over 400 domestic and international specialty food companies, which include well-known brands such as Ghirardelli, Godiva, Jelly Belly and Harry & David, as well as an additional 2,000 SKUs of seasonal items for the Valentine’s Day, Easter, Halloween and Christmas seasons.

About Tzetzo Bros, Inc.
Based in Buffalo, NY and founded in 1927, Tzetzo Bros. is an established leading provider of national branded, unbranded, and private label confectionery products sold to retailers throughout the United States. Tzetzo provides its products in a variety of packaged and bulk formats. The Company provides value added packaging as well as bulk distribution of chocolate, non-chocolate confectionery, fruit & nut mixes and specialty products. Tzetzo has developed expertise in worldwide sourcing, warehousing, and transportation logistics. Tzetzo is known for a variety of trade names, including Mayfair Sales, Holiday Candy, Alpine Valley, Basket Stuffers, Candy Carnival, Kids Play, Select Brands, Select Sweets, and Totally Sour.

About Slate Capital Group
Slate Capital Group is a leading private equity investment group based in Baltimore, Maryland that invests at all stages of a company’s life cycle, from growth equity investing to leveraged buyouts, and is focused on companies headquartered in the Mid-Atlantic region. The principals of Slate Capital have significant experience in both running small-to-mid-sized companies and investing in venture capital and leveraged buyout transactions. Slate Capital’s primary areas of focus include business services, direct marketing, healthcare services, for-profit education, niche software and consumer and retail investments. Additional information can be found at www.SlateCap.com.