SANTA MONICA, CALIF. and TEWKSBURY, MASS. —Clearlake Capital Group, L.P., an investment and private equity firm, on Nov. 18 acquired WellPet LLC, a premium pet food and treat company owning several successful brands, from its former private equity owner, Berwind Corporation.
Financial details of the transaction were not disclosed.
“We are thrilled to partner with WellPet during such a pivotal time in the premium pet food and treats category,” said José E. Feliciano, co-founder and managing partner at Clearlake. “We believe the current market tailwinds, enduring increase in pet ownership, and pet humanization dynamics offer a unique opportunity to meaningfully invest behind the company and accelerate WellPet's near- and long-term growth objectives to serve pet parents in the best possible ways. We are eager to support the WellPet management team and bring together all of Clearlake's available resources to drive value creation, accelerate organic growth, and create a consolidation platform for the category.”
Camelle Kent-Rizkalla, chief executive officer of WellPet, will continue leading the company. WellPet’s team of more than 400 employees will also remain with the company under Clearlake’s new ownership.
“Today marks an important new chapter in WellPet's history as we look to advance our mission of delivering nutritional excellence for the growing number of pet parents around the world,” Kent-Rizkalla said. “Clearlake's operational insights and deep experience in the consumer sector will accelerate our momentum in premium pet food and treat products and support our unwavering commitment to nutritional innovation, product quality for our partner retailers and pet owners, and the wellbeing of the pets that depend on our products.”
WellPet brands include Wellness Natural Pet Food, Old Mother Hubbard dog treats, WHIMZEES dental chews and treats, Eagle Pack, Holistic Select and Sojos. The company operates three state-of-the-art facilities in Indiana, Minnesota and the Netherlands. Its brands are distributed globally.
“We are excited to leverage our extensive experience investing in consumer brands, emerging food platforms, and health and wellness trends to the pet food and treats ecosystem,” added Arta Tabaee, managing director at Clearlake. “We believe deploying our deep bench of operating partners and our O.P.S. [operational improvement approach] value creation framework can drive accelerated growth at WellPet through best-in-class innovation, enhanced brand investment, and careful attention to the Company's customers and retail partners.”
WellPet was advised by Centerview Partners for the transaction, and Clearlake was advised by Goldman Sachs & Co.
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