Homegrown Naturals Inc. has acquired Annie's Naturals. The acquisition brings Annie's Naturals into Homegrown's family of natural and organic brands. Solera Capital LLC, the majority owner of Homegrown, facilitated the transaction through an investment in Homegrown. Financial terms of the acquisition and the Solera investment were not disclosed.
The addition of Annie's Naturals expands Homegrown's portfolio of environmentally friendly and socially responsible natural and organic brands. Homegrown's brands include Annie's Homegrown natural macaroni & cheese; Fantastic Foods, convenient vegetarian meals; and Consorzio flavored oils, dressings and marinades. Annie's Naturals' dressings that will become part of the portfolio include Goddess Dressing, and Shiitake & Sesame and Low-Fat Raspberry Vinaigrettes.
"Annie's Naturals' commitment to delicious products made with high-quality ingredients, its leadership position in the natural dressing category, and its grassroots focus make it a great fit with Homegrown," said John Foraker, CEO of Homegrown Naturals. "The addition of the Annie's Naturals brand and its outstanding products broadens and strengthens Homegrown's portfolio of best-in-class brands. We plan to maintain the integrity of the Annie's Naturals brand by continuing to fully support its values, mission, product quality and focus on strategic product development."
"For 20 years, we have worked very hard to build a leading brand in natural and organic foods, dedicated to social and local causes," said Peter Backman, co-founder of Annie's Naturals. "Homegrown and its brands share that vision with us and have similar histories. As part of Homegrown, Annie's Naturals will have a broader platform and greater access to new markets."
According to Datamonitor, the organic food sector is growing at a rate of approximately 20% annually, compared to 3% for conventional foods.
Molly F. Ashby, CEO of Solera Capital, said, "Natural and organic foods will continue to see dramatic growth as consumers become increasingly health conscious and interested in the quality of their food. This investment reflects our belief in the continuation of this trend, our confidence in Homegrown and our respect for Annie's Naturals' brand and products."
"Much of our historical growth came from people's interest in natural foods and a desire for better eating habits, and now that growth is expanding to the mainstream shopper," said Annie Christopher, co-founder of Annie's Naturals. "We expect Homegrown Naturals will help us continue to grow brand loyalty, and advance Annie's Naturals' mission of providing the best-tasting organic and all-natural dressings, sauces and marinades available."
The current leadership of Annie's Naturals will continue to play an active role in the evolution of the brand.