Sovos Brands, a Berkeley, Calif.-based food and beverage company backed by Advent International, signed a merger agreement under which Noosa Yoghurt LLC, a fast-growing premium yogurt manufacturer also backed by Advent, will expand Sovos Brands into the yogurt category, the companies said.

The transaction adds another “exciting brand” to the Sovos portfolio, which also includes Michael Angelo's and Rao's Homemade, the companies said. Sovos' mission is to acquire premium, on-trend brands with high-quality products that have significant growth opportunities, combining industry expertise with fresh thinking to bring authentic, delicious food into more homes.             

Noosa was co-founded in 2009 by Koel Thomae, an Australian expat, and Rob Graves, a Colorado dairy farmer, who set out to bring the Aussie-style yogurt with a creamy texture and sweet-tart flavor profile to the US market. Noosa yogurt is made with whole milk, a touch of wildflower North American honey and real fruit purées on a family farm in Bellvue, Colo. Sovos said it values Noosa's unique culture and its commitment to Colorado and plans to continue to manufacture products at the Bellvue facility.

"Noosa fits perfectly into our portfolio of one-of-a-kind brands in the food and beverage sector, and we have been impressed by its compelling growth opportunities, attractive consumer demographics and talented employee base," said Todd Lachman, president and CEO of Sovos Brands. "Noosa shares our unwavering commitment to authentic, delicious-tasting products using only the highest-quality ingredients. Our team brings significant experience across food and beverage categories, and we see a number of attractive opportunities to grow the Noosa brand as we expand Sovos Brands into the yogurt category."

According to Bill Johnson, chairman of both the noosa and Sovos boards of directors and former chairman, CEO and president of H.J. Heinz, Sovos will guide Noosa into its next phase of growth while remaining true to the brand's standard of making the finest yogurt with the finest ingredients.

"With the addition of Noosa, Sovos will become a more powerful force in the food and beverage sector," he said. "I've had a chance to work first-hand with the team at Sovos, and they bring a wealth of knowledge and capability that will help Noosa continue to scale and grow its brand. As part of Sovos, Noosa will continue to create the same great 'farm-to-fridge' products that consumers expect, and I'm excited about what our companies can achieve together."