Private equity firm TPG Growth has picked up a stake in popcorn group Angie's Artisan Treats, adding to a growing trend in better-for-you snack M&A that reflects consumer eating habits.

Angie's, which does business as Angie's Boomchickapop, makes snacks that are distributed in natural food, grocery, club and mass retail stores. The company makes whole grain, gluten-free, non-GMO snack foods. Angie's was founded in 2001 by husband-and-wife team Dan and Angie Bastian, and started out by selling the company's sweet and salty kettle corn. Now the company makes several flavors of popcorn, including caramel, cheddar and sea salt. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Fort Worth, Texas-based TPG Growth is the middle market and growth equity investment platform of asset manager TPG.  The firm is planning to help scale the Angie's business.

TPG Growth's other recent investments include software company Domo Inc., Elf Cosmetics and a group of Papa John's restaurants. 

Sherbrooke Capital, a private equity firm headquartered in Newton Lower Falls, Massachusetts, is selling the brand. The firm invested in Angie's in May 2011. Sherbrooke's other investments include Cia Bella Gelato, Izze Beverage and Boathouse Sports.

Kirkland & Ellis LLP provided legal advice to TPG. Piper Jaffray & Co. acted as Angie's and Sherbrooke's  financial adviser, and Lindquist & Vennum LLP provided legal advice to Angei's. Choat Hall & Stewart LLP provided legal advice to Sherbrooke.

As consumers shift their eating habits from a three-meals-a-day, meat-and-potatoes diet towards lighter, healthier meals and snacks, private equity firms and strategic buyers have looked to expand their better-for-you food offerings.

Recent healthy snack transactions include WhiteWave Foods Co.'s (NYSE: WWAV) deal for So Delicious Dairy Free for $195 million in September, and General Mills Inc.'s deal to buy Annie's Inc. for $820 million, also in September. 

For more on the trend, see Snack Time

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