Graham Partners is Wagging Its Tail With Latest Exit
September 29th, 2020
Graham Partners, a private investment firm targeting technology-driven advanced manufacturing companies, is pleased to announce the successful sale of BrightPet Nutrition Group, LLC (“BrightPet”). Headquartered in Lisbon, OH, BrightPet is a premium and super-premium pet food and treat producer serving domestic and international markets. Through its compelling slow-cooked pet food, freeze-dried and specialty treats, formulation expertise, and impeccable food safety record, BrightPet has developed successful co-pack, private label, and branded relationships.
Graham Partners identified premium and super-premium pet food as a high growth investment niche through its Investment Theme Program and in 2016 formed BrightPet through the acquisition of two contract manufacturing businesses and a pet food brand owned by the Golladay family. Graham’s investment thesis for BrightPet was premised on pet owners’ increasing tendency to treat pets like family members, as well as a conversion toward higher quality products that are sold through the fastest growing channels, including e-commerce.
Graham catalyzed the family-owned business and propelled its transformation to a leading producer of premium and super-premium pet food and treats. As part of this effort, Graham led the acquisition of two add-ons, expanded BrightPet’s management team, engaged a top-tier Advisory Council, further invested in operations, increased plant floor efficiencies, and implemented topline growth initiatives. Through these efforts, BrightPet professionalized its procurement process, added freeze-dried and specialty treats and a new brand to its offering, and increased its exposure to the rapidly growing e-commerce and export channels, among other achievements. As a result, BrightPet grew EBITDA by 85% during Graham’s hold period, including throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.
Joe Heinmiller, Managing Principal at Graham Partners, said, “We saw a strong core business with numerous avenues for growth fueled by the humanization of pets and had conviction that BrightPet was a great business given its expertise in formulations, key certifications, and relentless focus on quality. We are proud to have helped build a leading pet food and treat producer and we wish BrightPet continued success under new ownership.” Matt Golladay, Chief Executive Officer of BrightPet, stated, “Our partnership with Graham has been very rewarding and we are thankful for their support. In particular, Graham’s network of experienced industry professionals, coupled with the firm’s operational rigor, helped position BrightPet for long-term success.”
BrightPet Nutrition Group, headquartered in Lisbon, OH, is a premium and super-premium pet food and treat producer serving domestic and international markets. The company holds numerous certifications, allowing it to export to international markets, and is one of only a few USDA Certified Organic pet food producers in the U.S. Their top-of-the-line ingredient options and state-of-the-art American manufacturing operations ensure the quality of every recipe they produce.
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