Butterfly, a Los Angeles-based private equity firm specializing in the food sector, signed a definitive agreement to acquire Bolthouse Farms, Bakersfield, Calif., from Campbell Soup Co., Camden, N.J., for $510 million.
Bolthouse Farms is a vertically-integrated food and beverage company focused on developing, manufacturing and marketing proprietary, high value-added natural, healthy products, including fresh carrots and refrigerated premium beverages. It houses approximately 2,200 employees and operates facilities in Bakersfield, Hodgkins, Ill.; Wheatley, Ontario, Canada; and Prosser, Wash.
Bolthouse Farms is Butterfly’s fourth investment within its “seed-to-fork” approach to investing in food across agriculture, aquaculture, food and beverage products, food distribution and foodservice. Going forward, Jeff Dunn, operating partner of Butterfly, will assume the role of chief executive officer of Bolthouse Farms, where he previously served as president and CEO from 2008-2012, when it was acquired by Campbell Soup in 2012. He continued leading the business for Campbell Soup until his departure from the company in 2016.
“We are thrilled to partner with a vertically-integrated produce and fresh food leader with a history as rich as Bolthouse Farms, and we believe the company’s future is very bright, especially given the continued rise of plant-based food in the diet of today’s consumer,” says Adam Waglay, co-founder of Butterfly.
“We are proud to support Bolthouse Farms in further bolstering its strong positioning within fresh carrots and chilled premium beverages, and are excited to back a group of seasoned operators as passionate about produce as Jeff and his team to lead what is already a strong organization,” adds Dustin Beck, co-founder of Butterfly.
“Bolthouse Farms holds a special place in the produce industry, and my team and I are deeply committed to strengthening and broadening Bolthouse Farms’ unique legacy,” says Dunn. “We can’t wait to get started.”