Dallas private equity firm Riata Capital Group LLC is partnering with long-time retail executive Alan Shor to invest in specialty retail and multi-channel consumer companies.

Shor co-founded the Retail Connection, a real estate advisory, management and investment firm that works with more than 275 retail and restaurant chains. He has also held positions at jewelry retailer Zale Corp., Teavana (which has been owned by Starbucks since 2012) and European Wax Center, which is currently backed by Brazos Private Equity Partners LLC.

Riata was formed in January by former Brazos and Parallel Investment Partners executives Jeff Fronterhouse and Barron Fletcher to invest in consumer, energy, health care, business and industrial services companies.

The firm's employees have made a handful of other consumer and retail investments, including Dollar Tree, European Wax Center, Hibbett Sports, Lids, Moosejaw, Teavana, Walls Industries, the Children's Place and Fragrance Outlet, according to the firm.

The Rialta-Shor partnership comes at a time when real estate is of increasing importance to retailers, which are under pressure from changing consumer shopping habits and e-commerce. For more on the overlap, see American Apparel's Bankruptcy Underscores Challenges for Retailers and Retailers are Revamping, and Some will File for Bankruptcy.  

Both the retail and consumer goods sectors have seen several M&A transactions recently. On Nov. 30, Mattress Firm Holding Corp. (Nasdaq: MFRM) agreed to buy rival Sleepy's for $780 million. Before that, the Village Co., which markets Mr. Bubble bubble bath, bought a group of consumer products, including Soft & Dri deodorant from Brynwood Partners-backed High Road Brands. 

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