David’s Cookies acquires Jeff’s Gourmet Pies

by Josh Sosland
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TAMPA, FLA. — The parent company of David’s Cookies has emerged as the successful bidder in an auction to purchase Jeff’s Gourmet Pies, Inc., Tampa.

The sale to Fairfield Gourmet Food Group by Heritage Equity Partners, a merger and acquisition firm based in Easton, Md., completed a sales process the firm said featured “multiple qualified bidders” and “several rounds of competitive bidding.”

A hearing to approve the sale was conducted May 14, and closing is expected late in May.

Jeff’s Gourmet Pies was founded in 1982 and for many years has supplied desserts to well-known, national restaurant chains, as well as several national food service companies, including Sysco Corp. and U.S. Foods Co.

Jeff’s filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in early April to “restructure the debt and recapitalize the business with a new owner,” Heritage Equity said.

“This is a great outcome for Jeff’s Gourmet Pies, as well as the dedicated customer base that supported the business throughout this process,” said Matt LoCascio, managing director at Heritage Equity Partners. “David’s Cookies brings many synergies, as well as new opportunities for the business and perhaps most importantly, keeps over 60 jobs intact at the Tampa facility.”

David’s Cookies was established in 1979 by New York Chef David Liederman. The business was acquired in the 1980s by Fairfield, which said it grew the David’s brand “by introducing high quality cookies and frozen cookie dough into the food service and co-branding industries.”

David’s recently opened a new 160,000-square-foot facility in Cedar Grove, N.J., that employs 350. The company currently has sales in excess of $100 million.

“We are always on the lookout for ways to expand our bakery, pastry, and dessert items, and Jeff’s quality products are a perfect fit for our company’s long-term goals,” said Ari Margulies, president and c.e.o. of Fairfield Gourmet Foods. “We believe both brands can continue to be successful and expand on shared strengths including access to the multiple facilities and intellectual capital of both companies.”

Heritage Equity Partners specializes in investment banking and advisory services for distressed companies.

Jennis & Bowen served as counsel for the debtor and Goodrich, Postnikoff & Associates provided counsel for the secured creditor.
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