C.H. Guenther & Son, Inc. (CHG), San Antonia, Texas, acquired Golden West Baking Co., Gizella Pastry Ltd. and Les Boulangeries Rene, Inc., the two former of which are located in Vancouver, B.C., and the latter in Montreal, Quebec. The GW and LBR facilities produce buns, rolls and English muffins for the quick serve, foodservice and retail grocery channels, while the Gizella bakery produces frozen desserts such as cheesecakes, layer cakes, brownies and bars.
"Rene [Fluri, majority owner of these businesses], his management team and employees have built an impressive array of businesses that service many of the same customers that we supply today, but with an expanded geographical reach into Canada,” says Dale Tremblay, president and CEO of CHG. “The product capabilities are also very complimentary to both our European bakery business as well as our U.S. frozen dough and baked goods businesses."
Fluri established the Gizella pastry business in 1960 as a retail pastry shop in Vancouver. He expanded into wholesale bakery trade in 1967. In 1984, Fluri was asked to build a bun and muffin bakery to support a major restaurant chain, which led to the creation of Golden West Bakery. In 2003, Fluri acquired LBR, a Montreal-based bun bakery servicing the same quick-service sector.
"The sale of the business to C.H. Guenther & Son allows me to spend more time with family and enjoy some of the other important activities I have going on here in Vancouver and in Switzerland," adds Fluri. "CHG has a great 163-plus-year history servicing customers and consumers alike, and as with our Canadian businesses, has created a very family-oriented culture for all employees."
With this acquisition, Guenther will have nine production facilities in the United States, three in Canada and three in Europe (U.K. and Belgium).