Kainos Capital is merging several soup makers in its portfolio – including Kettle Cusiine, Bonewerks Culinarte’ and Savory Creations – into one business. In addition, Kettle Cuisine has purchased Norpac Foods‘ frozen soup business. Kettle Cuisine produces small-batch soups, for foodservice companies, restaurant chains and retailers. The company offers its products in both refrigerated and frozen formats, single-serve and bulk packaging. “The newly expanded Kettle Cuisine platform is positioned to serve an exciting intersection of consumer preferences for convenient, fresh food,” says Kainos partner Daniel Hopkin, who is one of Mergers & Acquisitions’ 11 Rising Stars of Private Equity. “At the same time, the combined company will even better meet operator needs for a supplier partner that can provide collaborative, chef-driven product development, redundant scale manufacturing, and the commitment to food safety and culinary principles that are the foundation of our brands.” Bonewerk makes glace and demi-glace sauce-based products that are delivered fully prepared, enabling chefs to save time and labor. Kainos purchased Bonewerk in 2018. Savory Creations offers broth concentrates to retailers and foodservice providers. Since acquiring Kettle Cuisine in 2015, Kainos has grown the business through add-on acquisitions, expanding the company’s cooking capacity and adding high-speed filling and packaging equipment. Dallas-based Kainos invests up to $150 million in businesses in the food and beverage and consumer sectors. The firm raised its second fund, at $895 million, in 2016. Kainos co-founder Sarah Bradley is one of Mergers & Acquisitions’ 2018 Most Influential Women in Mid-Market M&A.

Mergers & Acquisitions has opened up the nomination process for the 2019 edition of The Most Influential Women in Mid-Market M&A. Efforts to recruit and retain women in the financial services industry have increased in recent years; nevertheless, women still make up only about 14 percent of dealmakers in the middle market. By identifying and featuring dozens of influential women, Mergers & Acquisitions nurtures the community of female leaders and provides role models for women who are at earlier stages of their careers. To be considered, candidates must be women who are outstanding dealmakers both inside and outside of their firms. Evidence of influence in the broader M&A industry is essential. When nominating a candidate, please explain how she outperforms her colleagues at her firm and in the industry. Please provide examples of deals she has led, initiatives she has launched and other instances that show evidence of her influence in the middle market. While considering the merits of candidates, it’s helpful to read about women who have met our criteria in the past, such as Kainos Capital co-founder Sarah Bradley, who graced our 2018 cover. See the profiles of 35 women in our previous edition. Nominations must be received by Monday, October 15, 2018. Click here to learn more about the criteria and to submit a nomination.

As big corporations — and big banks, in particular — have faced pressure to take a stance on political issues ranging from immigration to gun control, Anne Finucane, vice chairman at Bank of America, has stepped into the spotlight. She is again one of American Banker’s Most Powerful Women in Banking, and is the only one in the top 10 to have moved up in the ranking this year. In the months ahead, Finucane also will become more visible overseas in her newly added role as chairman of BofA’s European operations. That will put her at the forefront of one of the thorniest challenges facing big banks: dealing with the fallout of the U.K.’s 2016 referendum to leave the European Union. For more, see The Most Powerful Women in Banking and The Most Powerful Women in Finance.

Deal news
Middle-market PE firm Tailwind Capital has raised its third fund at $1.8 billion. New York-based Tailwind usually seeks businesses that have up to $250 million in enterprise value in the business services, healthcare and industrial sectors. “The Fund has already completed four platform investments and we continue to see interesting acquisition opportunities,” says Tailwind managing partner Larry Sorrel. Credit Suisse and Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP advised Tailwind. For more on the fundraising efforts of PE firms, see: 10 PE firms armed with fresh capital and PE fundraising scorecard: Lincoln Peak and Opengate.

Sirius XM Holdings Inc. (Nasdaq: SIRI) agreed to acquire Pandora Media Inc. (NYSE: P) in a $3.5 billion deal, helping the satellite-radio company controlled by billionaire John Malone expand into online music. The combination will help Sirius XM expand beyond an audience that largely listens to the satellite radio company’s programs while driving. Sirius XM acquired a stake in Pandora in 2017 for $480 million, giving the online-radio company a lifeline after upstarts such as Spotify Technology SA began luring away streaming-music subscribers. Sidley Austin is advising Pandora. Read the full story: Sirius acquires Pandora to expand into online music.

Apax Partners is purchasing Authority Brands, the operator of home services franchisors the Cleaning Authority and Homewatch CareGivers.

Carlyle Group LP (Nasdaq: CG)-backed Array Canada Inc. is buying Poland-based Willson & Brown, a manufacturer of point of sale merchandising, retail displays and fixtures. Array also offers retail merchandising services. Goodwin Procter and EY advised Carlyle and EY.

Digital Realty (NYSE: DLR) has bought Great Hill Partners’ stake in Brazilian data center Ascenty Holdings for $1.8 billion. DH Capital and Choate Hall & Stewart advised Ascenty and Great Hill.

Digital information services provider DTN, a subsidiary of Zurich-based holding company TBG, is buying MeteoGroup from General Atlantic. Metogroup offers weather data and information to the energy, shipping, and transportation industries.

NCK Capital has acquired Tricoci University, a Chicago-based barber and cosmetology school with 16 campuses in the Midwest. Greyrock Capital Group and NBH Bank provided financing.

For more deal announcements see The weekly wrap: Drillinginfo, Marc Benioff, Western & Southern.

The LA Business Conference, hosted by ACG Los Angeles and held Sept. 25-26, at the glamorous Beverly Hilton Hotel in Beverly Hills, features speakers, including: Sir Richard Branson, founder, Virgin Group; Peter Guber, CEO, Mandalay Group and owner of the Golden State Warriors and co-owner of the Los Angeles Dodgers; John Hennessy, chairperson of Alphabet Inc. (Nasdaq: GOOGL), parent company of Google, and the former president of Stanford University; and Therese Tucker, the CEO of enterprise software developer BlackLine.

M&A East, hosted by ACG Philadelphia and held Oct. 24-25, at the Pennsylvania Convention Center in Philadelphia, brings together 1,300 top strategic and financial dealmakers and leading middle-market advisors for deal sourcing and networking. Featured speakers include Walter Robb, former CEO Whole Foods, and Chris Voss, former FBI lead hostage negotiator. The Women in Dealmaking session will focus on Women in the Board Room.

Exponent Evening with Tequila Casa Dragones, hosted by Exponent Women LLC, a networking group for female dealmakers, held Oct. 25 at The Dream Downtown in New York, features tequila, food and a conversation between Bertha Gonzales Nieves, co-founder and CEO of Tequila Casa Dragones, and Mary Kathleen Flynn, editor-in-chief of Mergers & Acquisitions. For more on networking group’s previous event, see Exponent drew 200 women dealmakers to event featuring Sallie Krawcheck.

People moves
Daniel Larkin has joined Seyfarth Shaw as a partner. Previously with Bryan Cave Leighton Pasiner, Larkin focuses on asset-backed transactions and financings.

Catherine Clancey Mandell has joined Argand Partners as general counsel and chief compliance officer where she is leading the firm’s legal, compliance and regulatory functions. She previously served as counsel at American Express Co. (NYSE: AXP).

Rob RIce has been hired by Clearlake Capital-backed Gravity Oilfield Services as CEO. RIce was most recently the chief operating officer of natural has company Archrock Inc. (NYSE: AROC).

Chip Virnig was promoted from principal to partner at Thoma Bravo. He has been with with the firm since 2008 and focuses on infrastructure and security software.

Ethan Zweig has joined investment bank Qatalyst Group as a partner. He was previously co-head of technology M&A at J.P. Morgan (NYSEL JPM).

Featured content
“Data and artificial intelligence are necessary conditions for private equity today,” says J. Taylor Crandall, a managing partner and a founding member of Oak Hill Capital Partners,which began investing in 1986 as the family office for Robert Bass, one of four brothers who founded Bass Brothers Enterprises, based in Fort Worth, Texas. “Historically, the data wasn’t available. Businesses were run on visceral intuitions. Now, the data is readily available and exponentially created. Every time you click on the Internet, it’s creating data for somebody to analyze how to run their businesses better. Data analytics is the low-hanging fruit to create value in every portfolio company we own.” For more, read the full story: Due diligence meets big data: Two Six Capital, Oak Hill, Clarion among pioneers.

Food & beverage M&A offers plenty of mouth-watering deals. Giants Coca-Cola Co. (NYSE: KO) and PepsiCo Inc. (Nasdaq: PEP) update their product lines with healthy offerings, while private equity firms, such as Brynwood Partners, breathe new life into tried and true brands, like Pillsbury. And lots of buyers experiment with meal kits and delivery methods, fueling M&A. Read the full story: 9 food & beverage companies loved by consumers and dealmakers alike.

Strategic buyers leverage data, sell more snacks and cater to seniors. Mergers & Acquisitions outlines the M&A strategies of 8 corporations, including Best Buy, Energizer, Fortune Brands, Hershey, Nike, P&G, Stanley Black & Decker and Tyson Foods. See the full story: Best Buy, Hershey, Nike, P&G and more wield M&A to grow.

Tyson Foods Inc. (NYSE: TSN), the owner of Hillshire Farm, wants to “feed the world” with its protein brands and will seek acquisitions to help. How Tyson is focusing on what it does best through M&A.

Between 70 and 80 percent of all M&A integration projects fall short of delivering anticipated value. This isn’t because the acquisition target is somehow subpar, it’s because the acquiring firm lacks a strong integration strategy. Read the full story: How to accelerate value in the first 100 days after an acquisition.

Why investors like diversity. “Companies that are inclusive and also diverse tend to outperform companies that aren’t,” says investor Lorine Pendleton of Pipeline Angels and Portfolia in this video interview shot at Exponent Exchange, a gathering of 200 female dealmakers. Watch the full video: M&A Insights: Inclusion investing.