CHICAGO — Arbor Investments announced that its pet food company Red Collar Pet Foods completed the sale of its dry manufacturing operations to Colgate-Palmolive’s Hill’s Pet Nutrition division on Sept. 30. The transaction included three of Red Collar’s kibble manufacturing facilities in Orangeburg, SC, Clinton, Okla., and Court House, Ohio.
Hill’s Pet Nutrition announced its plans to acquire the three facilities in August 2022 for $700 million, alongside its second quarter financials. Hill’s also acquired about 350 employees from the facilities, as well as Red Collar’s finished goods and raw material inventories at the dry manufacturing plants.
“We’re pleased Colgate and Hill’s recognized that our high-quality dry pet food manufacturing plants and committed associates would be a great fit for their growing Hill’s Pet Nutrition business,” said Jim Cohen, chief executive officer of Red Collar. “Red Collar and Arbor are gratified to know that our dry pet food associates will be joining a world-class organization as we fully focus on continuing to grow our pet treat co-manufacturing business.”
Red Collar also completed its sale of real estate assets in San Bernardino, Calif., earlier last month, amassing a total of $775 million from both sales.
Following these sales, Red Collar will now focus on operating and expanding its pet treat manufacturing business in Miami, Okla., and Joplin, Mo. The company’s treat business offers private-label and co-manufacturing services for retailers and pet brands. Red Collar will maintain its headquarters in Franklin, Tenn.
“We’re extremely proud of the transformation of Red Collar over the last three and half years,” said Tim Fallon, senior operating partner of Arbor. “Our team executed a highly complex carve-out from Mars, invested in new manufacturing capabilities and recruited a team of elite executives to support our vision and growth strategy. In addition to growing the legacy private label business, leadership expanded the company’s presence into co-manufacturing for national pet food brands who trusted Red Collar to manufacture for them. The hard work and dedication of Red Collar associates to create such a high-quality dry manufacturing network attracted interest from several large consumer package goods companies in need of additional dry pet food capacity.”
The three manufacturing facilities will be fully integrated into Hill’s global supply network, producing dry pet food products for the company’s Science Diet and Prescription Diet lines.
“For many years, I had been searching for the right opportunity for Arbor to invest in the growing pet food category,” said Gregory Purcell, co-founder and chief executive officer of Arbor. “The acquisition of Red Collar presented a dynamic opportunity to acquire gold plated manufacturing assets on a large scale, with optionality to either launch our own brand with our in-house experts or continue as the premium US contract manufacturer. While both were viable options, we chose the latter, reinvested accordingly and ultimately were recognized and rewarded with a successful partial exit, while still retaining a highly attractive pet treats manufacturing business.”
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