VANDEGRIFT, PA. — Pittsburgh-based investors F.N.B. Capital Partners, along with a group of local investors including Jim Rudolph and Len Caric, have acquired Uncle Charley’s Sausage Co. The investors said they plan to increase funding to expand the business while keeping its brand value, leadership, Vandergrift-based manufacturing facilities and employees intact. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Founded in 1988, Uncle Charley’s Sausage Co. produces and distributes sausage and meat products to retail markets throughout six states, including Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Ohio and Maryland. The 25-year-old regional brand sources its pork from the tri-state area, and the company’s product moves from field to store in about 48 hours and is never frozen.

“I am glad that it (the company) is staying in the hands of local people,” said Charles Armitage Sr., founder of Uncle Charley’s. “I have confidence that they will protect the brand’s reputation and help take the company to the next level of growth. They are buying a brand — one that our dedicated management team, employees and family have worked hard to create.”

The acquisition of Uncle Charley’s by both partners keeps the ownership of the company local with support from investors who are dedicated to the region and the brand.

“While we have plans to substantially grow the business, the priority is to maintain the integrity of the brand and product, while continuing to enhance relationships with our business partners and consumers,” said Stephen Gurgovits Jr., managing partner at F.N.B. Capital Partners.

Uncle Charley’s will operate under the leadership of Mr. Caric, who will take over as president and chief executive officer, and Mr. Rudolph, who has been named chairman. Mr. Armitage will serve as a consultant for Uncle Charley’s throughout the next year.

F.N.B. Capital Partners, L.P. is headquartered in Pittsburgh, and invests $3 million to $10 million per transaction.  The investment firm specializes in providing mezzanine debt, subordinated notes, private equity and other types of financial capital to small and medium size commercial enterprises for the purposes of recapitalizations, buyouts, generational transitions, mergers and acquisitions and other growth capital.