What We’re Seeing

Market Update1

The food & beverage M&A market remains active through April, with several notable transactions. Ferrero acquired the cookie and fruit snack businesses from the Kellogg Company for $1.3 billion, Performance Food Group acquired Eby-Brown Company for an undisclosed amount, and National Beef Packing acquired Iowa Premium for $150.0 million.

What We’ve Been Doing

Closed Harris Williams Transactions


Harris Williams Advises Van Law on its Sale to Stir Foods

Business Overview

  • Van Law Food Products, Inc. (“Van Law” or the “Company”) is a leading West Coast provider of private label and co-manufactured sauces, dressings, and beverage products.
  • Van Law has a proven track record of rapidly innovating new formulas  through extensive R&D and innovation capabilities, partnering with customers to expand their product offerings.
  • The Company is a leader in developing high-quality organic formulations.
  • The Company’s flexible and efficient facility is able to manufacture high and low-volume products.
  • Van Law is capitalizing on favorable outsourcing trends in a brand-agnostic manner, serving both legacy and emerging brands.

Key Value Drivers

  • Strategically located on the West Coast
  • Proven innovation and R&D capabilities
  • Leading organic capabilities
  • Flexible manufacturing facility
  • Entrenched relationships with blue-chip customers
  • Critical partner to a growing list of emerging brands


Vital Signs


Food and Beverage Spotlight: Better-For-You

What is Better-For-You?

In today’s food and beverage landscape, “better-for-you” (“BFY”) has broad application and meaning. Food and beverage products categorized as clean label, low sodium, organic, or having higher nutritional content than other products in a category could all fall under the BFY umbrella. As wellness and clean lifestyle grow in popularity, more health and general food trends are starting to merge.

Access the full article here

Natural Products Expo West

Rising consumer interest in natural and organic products is continuing to drive substantial growth in this food industry segment. That’s according to Harris Williams Managing Director Tim Alexander and Director Ryan Freeman, who recently attended Natural Products Expo West, the world’s largest natural and organic products event.

Access the full article here.

Harris Williams Advises graze on its Sale to Unilever

Nature Delivered Ltd., also known as graze, is one of the U.K.’s leading healthy snacking brands and has gained a solid foothold in a highly competitive U.S. market. Differentiated by its innovative business model, the 10-year-old tech-enabled business sells its branded products directly to consumers online and through retail.  Its products are present in over 30,000 stores across the U.K. and the U.S.

Access the full article here.

Select Harris Williams Better-For-You Transactions


Vital Signs

Restaurant and Grocery Store Sales Indices4


Consumer Food Price Index Inflation2


Key Trading Statistics1


Public Equity Market Overview

Public Company Sector Performance (Median One Year Change in Stock Price)1


Recent Equity Offerings5


Public Equity Market Overview1


 M&A Market Overview

Highlighted Food and Beverage M&A Transactions1


Ferrero Acquires Cookie and Fruit Snack Businesses of Kellogg Company

  • Ferrero acquired Kellogg’s Keebler, Famous Amos, Mother’s, Murray’s, and Girl Scout brands for $1.3 billion.
  • The transaction is part of Kellogg's broader effort to reshape and focus its portfolio.
  • The acquisition will help Ferrero expand its footprint and product portfolio in North America. 



Performance Food Group Acquires Eby-Brown Company

  • Performance Food Group acquired Eby-Brown Company for an undisclosed amount.
  • Based in Naperville, IL, Eby-Brown Company is a leading distributor of pre-packaged candy, snacks, beverages, and tobacco products in the convenience industry.
  • The acquisition will allow Performance Food Group’s Vistar segment to expand in the convenience store channel.



National Beef Packing Acquires Iowa Premium

  • National Beef Packing, the fourth largest beef packer in the U.S., acquired Iowa Premium for $150.0 million.
  • Based in Tama, Iowa, Iowa Premium provides beef packing services.
  • Iowa Premium expands National Beef’s operations with a processing facility in Iowa.


M&A Market Overview*

Food and Beverage M&A Trends1


Latest Deals and Announced Private Equity Activity1



* M&A transactions include European and cross-border deals since 2015.

Debt Market Overview

Food and Beverage Loan Activity6


Recent Debt Offerings7


M&A Overview*

Median LTM Trading Multiples & Quarterly Food & Beverage M&A1


Recent Food and Beverage M&A1



* M&A transactions include European and cross-border deals since 2015.

Food and Beverage Earnings Release Calendar

Earnings Release Calendar1


* M&A transactions include European and cross-border deals since 2015.

Public Comparables1



1. U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
2. Unweighted Average
3. US Census Bureau
4. Factset
5. Thomson Financial
6. S&P
7. Reuters

The information and views contained in this report were prepared by Harris Williams LLC (“Harris Williams”). It is not a research report, as such term is defined by applicable law and regulations, and is provided for informational purposes only. It is not to be construed as an offer to buy or sell or a solicitation of an offer to buy or sell any securities or financial instruments or to participate in any particular trading strategy. The information contained herein is believed by Harris Williams to be reliable but Harris Williams makes no representation as to the accuracy or completeness of such information. Harris Williams and/or its affiliates may be market makers or specialists in, act as advisers or lenders to, have positions in and effect transactions in securities of companies mentioned herein and also may provide, may have provided, or may seek to provide investment banking services for those companies. In addition, Harris Williams and/or its affiliates or their respective officers, directors and employees may hold long or short positions in the securities, options thereon or other related financial products of companies discussed herein. Opinions, estimates and projections in this report constitute Harris Williams’ judgment and are subject to change without notice. The securities and financial instruments discussed in this report may not be suitable for all investors and investors must make their own investment decisions using their own independent advisors as they believe necessary and based upon their specific financial situations and investment objectives. Also, past performance is not necessarily indicative of future results. No part of this material may be copied or duplicated in any form or by any means, or redistributed, without Harris Williams’ prior written consent.

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