CHICAGO — Entrepreneurial Equity Partners (e2p), a Chicago-based private equity firm focused on the food and consumer packaged goods industries, has closed its inaugural fund, Entrepreneurial Equity Partners I (e2p I or Fund I), with $423 million in aggregate capital commitments.

The e2p team is led by managing partners Mark Burgett and CJ Fraleigh. Mr. Burgett has more than 20 years of private equity and finance experience. Prior to co-founding e2p he was a managing director at Chicago-based private equity firm Wind Point Partners, where he led investments in food and consumer products for 14 years. Prior to Wind Point, he had progressively senior roles in the investment banking groups at Morgan Stanley and Robert W. Baird.

Mr. Fraleigh has more than 25 years of operating experience, including prior roles as chairman and chief executive officer of Shearer’s Foods, CEO of Sara Lee North America and vice president of colas at PepsiCo, Inc. 

Mr. Burgett and Mr. Fraleigh are joined on the leadership team by Richard G. Scalise, a partner. Mr. Scalise’s career includes prior roles as chairman and CEO of Hearthside Food Solutions, president of Ralcorp Frozen Bakery Products, and president and chief operating officer of Conagra’s Refrigerated Foods Division. Mr. Burgett, Mr. Fraleigh and Mr. Scalise previously partnered together on several successful private equity investments. 

“We are pleased and humbled by the investor support for our inaugural fund,” Mr. Burgett said. “We view Fund I’s successful capital raise as a testament to the team we have built and our demonstrated ability to deploy capital into compelling opportunities.”   

Fund I has invested in five platform investments to date, including Charcuterie Artisans (a producer of charcuterie and meats), Salm Partners (the largest US manufacturer of fully cooked sausages utilizing a differentiated, co-extrusion, cook-in-package manufacturing process), Sara Lee Frozen Bakery (a provider of frozen baked foods), World Food Holdings (a provider of authentic Mediterranean foods), and Ya YA Foods (one of North America’s largest co-packers of aseptic food and beverage products).