Rotunda’s investment in IF&P Foods shows investor appetite for healthy food
Rotunda Capital Partners LLC has acquired IF&P Foods LLC, a distributor of produce and healthy foods across the Midwest, for an undisclosed amount. The deal comes at a time when consumers are more informed and are demanding fresher, healthier, and better-for-you food options. The trend is expanding the need for more produce, either through purchase at retail grocery stores or through meals bought at dine-in restaurants.
Formed in 1997, IF&P Foods came to fruition after the merging of two produce distribution businesses, Indianapolis Fruit and Piazza Produce. The target sells a variety of fresh and packaged produce, in addition to meal-prepped components, to grocery stores, restaurants, schools, and food management companies. The Indianapolis, Indiana-based company has a fleet of more than 340 refrigerated trucks servicing at least 14 states across the Midwest. The target operates from five facilities and distributes its products under multiple brands, to include: Garden Cut, Circle City Produce and Papania Produce.
“We’ve been looking for a platform company in the produce distribution sector for quite some time, and IF&P is an exciting company with tremendous growth prospects,” states Rotunda partner Dan Lipson. “Combined with our distribution expertise, there’s a great opportunity to expand IF&P’s reach and offerings and provide a new platform for growth.”
Based in Washington, D.C., Rotunda is a lower middle-market private equity firm that backs businesses with up to $100 million in enterprise value. The PE firm has made deals in a variety of sectors, including: transportation, distribution, specialty finance, business services and logistics. The PE firms has previously backed ramp maker Heavy Duty Ramps LLC, and acquired a majority stake in fulfillment services company Amware Logistics Services.
Dealmakers have a healthy appetite for better-for-you food and beverage companies. Related deals include: Fresh&co’s acquiring a 35-acre farm to focus on local ingredients; Dr Pepper Snapple Group Inc.’s purchasing of antioxidant drink company Bai Brands LLC; and General Atlantic’s minority investment in Joe & the Juice, a chain of urban juice and coffee bars.