Private equity firm creates premium dessert company

by Eric Schroeder
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DETROIT — Private equity firm Superior Capital Partners, L.L.C. has completed its acquisition of Heinz North America’s Foodservice Dessert business and renamed it Dianne’s Fine Desserts. The new company will provide gourmet frozen, thaw-and-serve desserts to the food service industry and in-store bakeries.

The purchase included Dianne’s Gourmet Desserts and Alden Merrell Fine Desserts, their manufacturing plants and the 500 employees at their bakeries in Le Center, Minn., and Newburyport, Mass. Other brands in the company’s portfolio include Black Tie, and Skooopz.

The newly formed company will be headquartered in Newburyport.

“Dianne’s Fine Desserts operates in an appealing sector of the food industry and the business offers significant growth potential,” said Mike Knowles, chief executive officer of Dianne’s Fine Desserts. “Our growth strategy will be focused on providing world class operational excellence, superior customer service and innovative products for our customers.”

Dan Scales, president of Dianne’s Fine Desserts, added, “New ownership, dedicated to a single core business platform, will provide Dianne’s Fine Desserts with the focus to excel in the highly competitive premium dessert sector. The company enjoys strong core markets and an established customer base that will benefit from our single-minded approach toward creating inspiring desserts that perfectly complement and anticipate consumers’ demands for eye-popping, memorable and delicious products.”

Both Mr. Knowles and Mr. Scales are veterans of the baking industry. Mr. Knowles is a former president of the frozen and refrigerated bakery business at Sara Lee Corp., and Mr. Scales is a former c.e.o. of Little Lady Foods and president of Pennant Foods.

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