ROUGEMONT, Que.—Quebec-based Lassonde Industries Inc. has acquired an American juice maker in a US$150-million deal, marking the firm’s entrance into the branded juice market in the United States.
Lassonde’s acquisition of Port Washington, N.Y.-based Apple & Eve, LLC is expected to give the company “a more diversified and balanced product portfolio” in the U.S. market, as well as “an entry point in national brand products” south of the border.
“Our entry into the branded juice business in the United States represents another major milestone in our North American strategy,” company chair and chief executive Pierre-Paul Lassonde said in a release.
“It is aligned with our strategy of consistent, measured growth and enhances our overall position in the industry by providing an excellent platform for the future.”
The deal, which is expected to close this month, will see Lassonde own a 90 per cent stake in Apple & Eve, while the Lassonde family will own the remaining 10 per cent.
Founded in 1975, Apple & Eve sells more than 100 juice products under a host of brands, including its namesake Apple & Eve brand, as well as the Organics, Fruitables, Quenchers, Waterfruits and Sesame Street brands.
It had annualized net sales of US$190.0 million last year, according to Lassonde.
“We are pleased to add one of America’s best known juice brands to our portfolio,” Lassonde president and COO Jean Gattuso said. “Like Lassonde in Canada, Apple & Eve is synonymous with innovative products in the health and wellness segment in the U.S.
“We are confident in our ability to continue to grow the brand.”
The deal will be financed through a combination of credit and cash, and is subject to customary closing conditions.