United Natural Foods to acquire gourmet ethnic foods distributor

by Monica Watrous
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Haddon House Food Products
Haddon House Food Products serves diverse customer base in Eastern United States.

PROVIDENCE, R.I. — United Natural Foods, Inc. (UNFI) has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire all outstanding stock of Haddon House Food Products, Inc., a privately owned distributor and merchandiser of natural and organic and gourmet ethnic products throughout the Eastern United States and abroad. The cash transaction is valued at approximately $217.5 million, subject to certain customary post-closing adjustments.

Founded in 1960, Medford, N.J.-based Haddon House provides more than 20,000 dry grocery, frozen and refrigerated products to a diverse customer base that includes conventional supermarkets, gourmet food stores and independent retailers. The combination is expected to expand the company’s operating scale and resources to further develop its product and service offering, said David Anderson, Sr., president and chief executive officer of Haddon House.

Steven Spinner, United Natural Foods
Spinner, president and c.e.o. of UNFI

“Haddon House has a unique product and service offering that we expect to play an important role in our ongoing strategy to build out UNFI’s gourmet and ethnic product categories across the country,” said Steven Spinner, president and chief executive officer of UNFI. “The Haddon House team has demonstrated exemplary customer service and growth over the last decade while also building a distinctive private label brands business. We are excited to have them join the UNFI family as we venture into new channels and markets together.”

The acquisition is expected to close in the fourth quarter of the fiscal year. Haddon House will be operated as a wholly-owned subsidiary of UNFI, and Mr. Anderson and David Anderson Jr., executive vice-president, will remain at the company in leadership roles. The transaction is expected to be accretive to UNFI’s earnings in fiscal 2017.

UNFI carries and distributes more than 85,000 products to more than 40,000 customer locations throughout the United States and Canada, serving a variety of retail formats that includes conventional supermarkets, natural food stores, independent retailers and food service.
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