Platinum Equity this week announced the signing of a definitive agreement to acquire Horizon Organic and Wallaby from Danone.

Horizon Organic is the largest USDA-certified organic dairy brand in the world and is a pioneer in dairy beverages, having introduced the first organic milk available coast to coast in the United States in 1991. Horizon Organic's portfolio of organic dairy products includes milk, creamers and whiteners, yogurt, cheese and butter.

The proposed acquisition also includes the Wallaby brand, an Australian-inspired Greek-style yogurt made with organic milk and premium ingredients.

"Horizon Organic is an iconic name in dairy that is well recognized and beloved by consumers," said Platinum Equity Co-President Louis Samson. "The brand has earned a reputation for quality and innovation that is unmatched in the industry. We appreciate Danone's confidence in our ability to build on that legacy and support Horizon Organic's growth as a standalone company."

The U.S. dairy category is estimated at $68 billion with milk comprising approximately $17 billion of that total.  

"Premium offerings, including organic and value-added products, are driving the growth in the dairy milk category," said Platinum Equity Managing Director Adam Cooper. "Horizon Organic is a pioneer of that segment and is in position to continue capitalizing on and accelerating the trend."

Platinum Equity's current portfolio includes Biscuit International, a European manufacturer of private-label sweet biscuits, wine producer Fantini Group Vini and seafood provider Iberconsa. Previous Platinum Equity investments include JM Swank, a food ingredients distributor acquired from ConAgra, and Harvest Meat Company, a U.S. distributor of packaged meat and bakery products.

The proposed acquisition of Horizon Organic and Wallaby is subject to customary closing conditions and regulatory approval.

About Platinum Equity
Founded in 1995 by Tom Gores, Platinum Equity is a global investment firm with approximately $47 billion of assets under management and a portfolio of approximately 50 operating companies that serve customers around the world. Platinum Equity specializes in mergers, acquisitions and operations – a trademarked strategy it calls M&A&O – acquiring and operating companies in a broad range of business markets, including manufacturing, distribution, transportation and logistics, equipment rental, metals services, media and entertainment, technology, telecommunications and other industries. Over the past 28 years Platinum Equity has completed more than 450 acquisitions.