CHICAGO — Wind Point Partners, a Chicago-based private equity firm, has partnered with food executive Milt Liu to acquire Pacifica Foods and Stir Foods.
Headquartered in Corona, Calif., Pacific Foods is a custom manufacturer of soups, sauces, dressings and salsas for retail and food service customers. The company operates two production facilities.
Stir Foods is based in Orange, Calif., and also operates two production facilities. The company makes soups, sauces, dressings and muffin batters for retail and food service customers.
The acquisition is expected to allow the companies to begin offering a more diverse set of product and packaging offerings while providing additional capacity for growth and access to more culinary expertise and resources.
“Pacifica Foods and Stir Foods are leaders in the attractive custom food manufacturing industry,” said Joe Lawler, principal at Wind Point. “Our investment will support the strong cultures established by the ongoing ownership and current management teams to continue to deliver strong quality and customer service and grow with our customers.”
He said Wind Point is particularly excited about the partnership with Mr. Liu, who he said “brings decades of highly relevant leadership experience in food manufacturing and retail.”
Mr. Liu will become chief executive officer of the companies. He most recently was president and c.e.o. of Flying Food Group and earlier held various senior level roles within Target Corp.’s grocery business.
Wind Point said Pacifica and Stir’s four production facilities will remain open and management from both companies will continue to be involved in future operations.Wind Point’s most recent food investments include Evan Food Group (acquired in April 2016), Gehl Foods (acquired in March 2015), Shearer’s (sold to Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan in January 2015), Hearthside Food Solution (sold to Goldman Sachs and Vestar Capital in June 2014), Rupari Foods (acquired in July 2011) and Nonni’s (acquired in February 2011). Wind Point reached an agreement to sell Nonni’s to private equity firm Vestar Capital Partners in November 2017.