The Blackstone Group announced Monday that it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Pinnacle Foods Group Inc. for approximately $2.16 billion in cash.
Roger Deromedi, the former CEO of Kraft Foods Inc., will assume the role of Chairman upon the closing of the transaction.
“The men and women of Pinnacle Foods are extremely excited to partner with The Blackstone Group,” said Jeffrey Ansell, CEO of Pinnacle Foods. “Pinnacle’s portfolio of well-known brands has deep heritage and a strong consumer following, and we look forward to building and strengthening our iconic brands.”
Pinnacle Foods produces a number of leading consumer brands including Duncan Hines, Vlasic pickles, Hungry Man and Swanson frozen dinners, Log Cabin and Mrs. Buttersworth’s syrups. The company employs more than 3,000 people, owns seven manufacturing facilities in the United States, and generates approximately $2.1 billion in annual gross sales.
Under the merger agreement, an affiliate of The Blackstone Group is expected to merge with Crunch Holding Corp., the direct owner of Pinnacle Foods. The owners of Crunch Equity Holding, LLC and the Boards of Directors of Pinnacle Foods and Crunch Holding Corp. have unanimously approved the transaction.
Pinnacle Foods is jointly owned by affiliates of J.P. Morgan Partners, LLC, (CCMP Capital Advisors, LLC manages their investment in Pinnacle Foods), by J.W. Childs Associates, L.P., by CDM Group, an investment company controlled by Pinnacle Foods Board Chairman C. Dean Metropoulos, and by former bondholders of Aurora Foods Inc.