STERLING FOODS ACQUIRED BY TGF MANAGEMENT AND AUSTIN VENTURESSan Antonio / Austin, Texas, January 7, 2009 – Sterling Foods Ltd. (“Sterling Foods” or “the Company”), TGF Management Corp. (“TGFM”) and Austin Ventures (“AV”) today announced TGFM and AV’s acquisition of Sterling Foods. The transaction closed on December 30, 2008 and financial terms were undisclosed. The investment by TGFM, made through its latest private equity fund, Southwest Opportunity Partners, L.P., is in partnership with AV and the Sterling Foods management team.
Founded in 1971, Sterling is a leading supplier of baked goods, as well as a provider of gourmet bakery items to the food service and retail industries. Based in San Antonio, TX, Sterling's products include a wide variety of specialty and gourmet baked products such as brownies, cakes, cookies, snack breads, soft pretzels, muffins, scones, pizza crusts and biscuits. Sterling is the largest supplier of shelf stable bakery products to the military, and also provides products to the K - 12 educational market, weight management industry and other specialty commercial markets. Its products are sold in nationally recognized restaurant chains, leading supermarkets and club stores.
In 1993, TGFM acquired Sterling Foods from its family-held owners and hired John Likovich as Chief Executive Officer. Under TGFM’s direction, Mr. Likovich grew the business almost three-fold, and in 2001 TGFM sold the business to ICV Capital Partners. Since then, Mr. Likovich has significantly diversified and increased the Company’s source of revenues and profitability through organic growth, entry to new markets, and the acquisition of Buena Vista Foods in 2007. TGFM and AV believe the next phase of Sterling Food’s growth will be driven by increasing the product offering to its core military customer base, geographic expansion of the educational market products, continued market share growth in the weight management industry, and additional capital investment in equipment aimed at increasing the efficiency of the operations.
“We have known John for 14 years and look forward to working with him and his management team again to continue a legacy of expanding the business,” said Vernon Bryant, a Partner at TGFM. John Likovich, Chief Executive Officer of Sterling Foods, added “The management team and I are excited to re-engage with TGFM and to add AV to the team as the Company embarks on executing the next phase of our growth plan.”
About TGF Management Corp.
Austin, Texas-based, TGF Management Corp. is one of the oldest and most active private equity firms in the Southwest, focusing on partnering with management teams and operational executives in the acquisition of middle market companies. Since 1992, TGFM has invested in over 40 companies with combined revenue in excess of $3.5 billion. TGFM currently manages in excess of $700 million on behalf of the Texas Growth Fund, and its latest private equity fund, Southwest Opportunity Partners, L.P. For further information, call 512.322.3100 or visit TGFM's website at www.tgfmanagement.com.
About Austin Ventures
Austin Ventures has worked with talented entrepreneurs and executives to build valuable companies for nearly 25 years. With $3.9 billion under management, AV is the most active venture capital and growth equity firm in Texas and one of the most established in the nation. With a focus on business services, information services, integrated media, computer and communications hardware, enterprise software and special situations, AV invests at all stages of company development, from $100,000 "planned experiments" in early stage ideas to $100+ million investments in expansion rounds, minority recapitalizations, and buyouts of middle-market growth companies. Visit www.austinventures.com for more information
Vernon W. Bryant