Sun Capital Strikes Contessa Foods Deal

Sun Capital Partners, the Boca Raton, Fla.-based private equity firm, has agreed to acquire the assets of Contessa Premium Foods through a 363 bankruptcy sale, which was approved in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Central District of California. Contessa Premium Foods is based in San Pedro, Calif., and since 1984 has made a variety of frozen meals.


Affiliate of Sun Capital Partners, Inc. Enters into an Agreement to Acquire the Assets of Contessa Premium Foods, Inc.
Leading U.S. Processor and Distributor of Premium Frozen Seafood and Bagged Convenience Meals
BOCA RATON, FL – July 6, 2011 – Sun Capital Partners, Inc. (“Sun Capital”), a leading private investment firm specializing in leveraged buyouts and investments in market-leading companies, today announced that an affiliate has entered into an agreement to acquire substantially all of the assets of Contessa Premium Foods, Inc. (“Contessa” or “the Company”) through a 363 bankruptcy sale. The sale was approved on June 29, 2011, by The United States Bankruptcy Court for the Central District of California. The acquisition is expected to close by mid-July 2011.
Founded in 1984 and headquartered in San Pedro, CA, Contessa is a leading U.S. processor and distributor of premium seafood and frozen bagged convenience meals. Contessa’s branded and private-label products include a range of frozen seafood products, most notably shrimp, as well as convenience and home-style meals, vegetable stir-fries, sauce blends, pizza and exotic fruits. Sold through U.S. retail and foodservice outlets, including supermarkets, price clubs, restaurants, national food distributors and private label partners, the brand is popular with health-conscious customers seeking high quality seafood products and nutritional convenience meals produced in an environmentally responsible manner. In 2007, the Company opened the world’s first “green” frozen-food manufacturing plant in Los Angeles.
“The Contessa management team has built a great business, centered around best-in-class food quality and environmental friendliness,” said Jared Wien, Vice President at Sun Capital Partners. “Contessa’s already strong market position in the frozen seafood category and its state-of-the-art manufacturing and processing capabilities have enabled the Company to capitalize on the growing demand for high-end frozen seafood and convenience meals. We look forward to working with management and our commercial partners to continue to develop the Contessa brand and expand our private label relationships.”
Sun Capital has significant prior experience in the food, foodservice and seafood sectors through its affiliated portfolio companies Creekstone Farms Premium Beef, a leading processor of the highest quality Black Angus beef; Harry’s Fresh Foods, a producer of premium home-style refrigerated foods for the retail and foodservice markets; Sunrise Growers-Frozsun, a leading value-added supplier of frozen and fresh strawberry products; as well as Captain D’s, a 535-store U.S. restaurant chain that serves great seafood at reasonable prices in a relaxed environment. Sun Capital’s in-depth industry knowledge and familiarity with the 363 process will provide stability to the Company, its employees, customers and supplier base, and will allow for a smooth transition.
About Sun Capital Partners, Inc.
Sun Capital Partners, Inc. is a leading private investment firm focused on leveraged buyouts, equity, debt, and other investments in companies that can benefit from its in–house operating professionals and experience. Sun Capital affiliates have invested in more than 265 companies worldwide with combined sales in excess of $40 billion since Sun Capital’s inception in 1995. Sun Capital has offices in Boca Raton, Los Angeles, and New York, as well as affiliates with offices in London, Paris, Frankfurt, Luxembourg, Shanghai and Shenzhen. For more information, please visit
About Contessa Premium Foods, Inc.
An environmentally and nutritionally responsible frozen food manufacturer, Contessa Premium Foods, Inc. imports, processes and distributes its products throughout North America, Europe, and Asia, and markets to retail, club, foodservice, and private-label channels. Contessa’s portfolio of products includes but is not limited to specialty seafood, convenience meals, gourmet stir-fry vegetables and exotic fruit.
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