Houlihan Lokey's Consumer, Food & Retail Group is pleased to announce that Les Plats du Chef Inc. (Plats du Chef), a portfolio company of Claridge Inc., has been acquired by C.H. Guenther & Son, Inc. (C.H. Guenther). Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed. The transaction closed on June 30, 2017.
Plats Du Chef began in Montreal, Canada, in 1981 when Chef Michel Lachapelle and his wife, Monique, founded the company. At the beginning, the company specialized in making chef-quality appetizers, such as Escargots en Brioche, for local grocers. Because of the exceptionally high quality of these original products, the Plats du Chef business grew—and by 1994, the company was an internationally successful frozen food manufacturer, making signature products such as French Onion Soup and Pizzettas, both of which remain best sellers today. In 2002, Plats du Chef was acquired by Claridge, which worked with management to develop and grow the business. Today, Plats du Chef manufactures and distributes both retail and foodservice frozen dips, soups, snacks, appetizers, and meals to top-tier accounts throughout North America.
Founded by Carl Hilmar Guenther in 1851 and based in San Antonio, Texas, C.H. Guenther has delivered high-quality grain products, traditional flavors, and "just baked from scratch" taste for more than 165 years. C.H. Guenther is a leading supplier of gravies, sauces, baking mixes, and other value-added, grain-based food products to foodservice and select consumer markets in North America and Europe. Some of the C.H. Guenther brands include Gizella Pastry, Morrison, Pioneer, Sun-Bird, White Wings, and Williams.
Claridge Inc. represents the interests of the Stephen Bronfman family and is actively involved in the management of a diverse portfolio of investments in private equity, hedge funds, public equities, real estate, and food.