Lassonde Industries Inc. in Quebec has acquired Old Orchard Brands, a family-owned juice and beverage company based in Sparta (north of Grand Rapids), for $146 million, subject to working capital and other adjustments, payable upon closing of the transaction.
“Adding the Old Orchard brand to our product portfolio will further strengthen our presence in the U.S. national brands sector,” says Pierre-Paul Lassonde, chairman and CEO of Lassonde Industries Inc. “This transaction fits well within our sustained growth strategy and improves our overall position in the United States.”
Old Orchard Brands was founded in 1985 and employs nearly 100 people. Lassonde produces fruit juices, drinks, and cranberry sauces. The company employs about 2,100 people in 14 plants across the U.S. and Canada.
“Old Orchard has a good reputation in the United States and enjoys solid brand loyalty, especially in the central United States,” says Jean Gattuso, president and COO of Lassonde Industries Inc. “The Old Orchard brand complements our existing brands and, what’s more, the transaction will add a line of frozen juices to our product offering, which introduces interesting growth opportunities.”
A further amount of up to $10 million may be payable over the next two years subject to specified financial milestones. Lassonde has also agreed to purchase the property, which includes the plant and the land, for $4 million subject to satisfaction of certain regulatory conditions. If these conditions are not met, the property will be rented under a long-term lease.
“I am pleased that we have reached an agreement with Lassonde. It’s the perfect combination of two companies with a long history of success in the juice industry,” says Mark Saur, president and CEO of Old Orchard Brands. “I am proud of what we have built over the past 30 years and could not think of a better owner of our brand and business than Lassonde. I have always admired this family-oriented business, their value system and the quality of their product offering. This is a perfect match that closes an exciting chapter for our family and employees and opens an even more exciting one.”
The transaction is expected to close in May.