ICV Partners Announces Formation of Desi Fresh Foods
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NEW YORK, February 21, 2023-- ICV Partners, LLC, a leading investment firm focused on lower middle market companies in business services, consumer goods & services, food & beverage, and healthcare, announced today that it has acquired the Desi NaturalTM and NogaTM brands and related assets from Raymundo's Food Group, LLC, a portfolio company of AUA Private Equity Partners, LLC, to form a new company, Desi Fresh Foods ("Desi Fresh" or "The Company").
Desi Fresh Foods is the leading producer of dahi, or South Asian yogurt, and lassi, a drinkable south Asian yogurt, in the United States. Dahi is a traditional yogurt that is primarily used as an ingredient in South Asian meals, side dishes and beverages. Dahi has a unique blend of sweet and sour taste as well as a firm texture, that makes it an essential staple in many South Asian cuisines. The Desi Natural brand is the leading brand of dahi in the United States.
Qian Elmore, a Managing Director at ICV, said, "ICV is excited to create a new company that is a leader in its category. Desi Fresh Foods growth has outpaced the growth of the South Asian population and appeals to the broadening American consumer's palate. We think there is considerable opportunity to bring Desi Fresh Foods products to more grocers in America." Mr. Elmore further stated, "The Desi NaturalTM and NogaTM brands are also a good value, consistently high quality and better for you products consumers like, especially in today's economy."
Desi Fresh Foods is located in Farmingdale, NY where it operates its primary plant. The Company will be led by Larry LaPorta as CEO. Mr. LaPorta has run the business since 2018 as its general manager. Prior to Desi Fresh Foods, Mr. LaPorta was an executive in marketing and operating roles at Beiersdorf, Revlon, and Kraft Foods.
"My team and I are thrilled with the growth opportunities that are in front of us at Desi Fresh Foods. We have plans to increase our distribution and new product offerings to meet the changing needs of our consumers. Further, we will also invest to meet the growing demand for our fantastic brands. Ultimately, we want to create the leading refrigerated South Asian food company in the US," said Mr. LaPorta.
Willie Woods, President of ICV, commented, "Our investment in Desi Fresh Foods is the result of our intentional pursuit of niche food companies that produce key ingredients for consumers and foodservice. The American consumer has become more adventurous and looks for authentic ethnic foods and diverse flavor profiles. We are always looking to invest in companies that address that demand."
Financing for the acquisition was provided by M&T Bank. ICV Partners was advised by Jason Juall at DLA Piper and Joseph Alexander at Latham & Watkins. Raymundo's Food Group, LLC, a portfolio company of AUA Private Equity Partners, LLC, was represented by McDermott Will & Emery as legal advisor and Lazard as exclusive financial advisor.
About ICV Partners
Founded in 1999, ICV Partners is a Miami and Atlanta-based private investment firm that supports management leaders of strong lower middle market companies in pursuing growth. Over its first four funds, the principals of ICV have crafted a strong track record of helping companies expand their footprint and improve performance over the long term and across a variety of industries. Additional information is available at www.icvpartners.com.