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Premium Brands acquires Island City, Conte Foods and Larosa Fine Foods

Conte Foods will merge with Larosa Fine Foods as a result of these acquisitions


B.C.-based Premium Brands Holdings Corporation, a major producer, marketer and distributor of branded specialty food products, has acquired Island City Baking and its affiliate Conte Foods for a total purchase price of $20.3 million.

Founded in 1990, Island City Baking manufactures fresh and frozen artisan breads. It operates out of a 45,000-sq.-ft. production facility located in Richmond, B.C. and services retail and foodservice customers across southern B.C. Conte Foods was founded three years later, in 1993, and is a distributor of a variety of specialty food products including items imported from various parts of Europe and fresh pasta produced at its new 16,000-sq.-ft. facility located in Burnaby, B.C.

Island City and Conte Foods have combined annual sales of approximately $20 million.

“We are very pleased to welcome Carmelo De Luca, president of Island City, and An Nguyen, senior VP Operations of Island City, and the rest of their team to Premium Brands,” says George Paleologou, president and CEO of Premium Brands. “Both Island City and Conte Foods have built strong reputations for manufacturing great high-quality products and providing exceptional service to their customers. Furthermore, the dynamic and entrepreneurial cultures that Carmelo and An have developed at Island City and Conte Foods make these businesses a perfect fit with Premium Brands.”

In a separate transaction, Premium Brands also acquired the business and assets of Larosa Fine Foods, a manufacturer and wholesaler of specialty Italian products. With annual sales of approximately $4 million, Larosa is currently based in Vancouver but will be moving its operations into Conte Foods’ Burnaby, B.C. facility.

The purchase price for Larosa was $0.7 million.

“We are very excited about the opportunities that will result from the merger of Conte Foods and Larosa,” says Paleologou. “The new combined business, which will be under the leadership of Carmelo De Luca, will position us well in a fast-growing, niche segment of the specialty food space. Furthermore, we expect to accelerate its growth by enabling it to leverage Premium Brands’ resources including our extensive sales and marketing infrastructure in Canada and the U.S.”

“Both An and I are very excited about joining Premium Brands,” adds De Luca. “We have followed the company for many years and have no doubt that it is the right partner for Island City and Conte Foods and that it will help us take both businesses to the next level in their development. We also take great comfort in knowing that Premium Brands has a reputation for being a respectful and supportive acquirer and that our employees are in good hands.”


Food in Canada

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