In June, two contract service providers—manufacturer Hearthside Food Solutions and co-packer Ryt-way Industries—became one corporate entity under the ownership of Chicago-based private equity firm Wind Point Partners.
Wind Point acquired Hearthside in 2009 and Ryt-way in 2008. The company said in May that the merger would create a leading North American contract food and consumer packaged goods manufacturer-packager with more than $1 billion in sales and 19 manufacturing facilities across seven states.
"The combined company will be not only significantly larger but also able to deliver a wider array of services,” said Rich Scalise, CEO of Hearthside and now the combined entity. Scalise is a 35-year food industry veteran with experience at Ralcorp Frozen Bakery Products and ConAgra Foods, is CEO for the combined business. Ryt-Way CEO David Finch added that the merger presents a "great opportunity" for customers owing to "a broader suite of capabilities" and "a one-stop shop for contract manufacturing.”
Mark Burgett, a managing director at Wind Point, added that the merger presents "significant growth opportunities for the business in addition to value for our investors. Given the similarities between the businesses, we expect to start realizing benefits immediately.”
Since its founding in 1984, Wind Point has raised more than $2.8 billion in commitments, acquired more than 90 core "platform" companies and 160 "add-on" acquisitions. Current investments are ongoing, based on a $915 million fund closed in April 2009.
Separately in June, Wind Point acquired Greenfield, MA-based Argotec, a maker of specialty polyurethane film and sheet with unique properties for niche applications including surface protection and impact resistant glass, among others. It will serve as a new platform company into which additional "add on" companies would be merged.