- Leadership: Howard Eirinberg
- Prospect Team: Brad O’Dell, Lou Kenter
- Location: Glendale Heights, IL
- Industry: Specialty Food
- Investment Date: November 2004
- Exit Date: September 2016
Kronos is a leading manufacturer of gyros meat, pita/flatbread, filo products, sauces, hummus and other premium Mediterranean foods. Kronos distributes its products nationally through foodservice channels and major retailers, including broadline and specialty distributors/redistributors, club stores, mass merchants and grocery chains. Kronos also produces custom products for QSR, fast-casual, and family dining restaurant chains as well as for specialty food manufacturers. The Company operates from facilities in Glendale Heights, IL as well as Madera, CA.
Our investment in Kronos is a great example of backing a strong niche brand and leveraging it to expand market share and enter new categories.
We were introduced to Kronos via an intermediary. Management was looking for a partner to provide liquidity for a tiered shareholder base and support a renewed growth strategy. After the shareholder base initially failed to sell the Company, we were able to partner closely with management and recapitalize the business.
We saw an opportunity to build an ethnic food platform, leveraging a strong brand and leading market position. Kronos was a leading manufacturer and distributor of gyros and other Mediterranean products, but it suffered from an ownership group that wasn’t focused on growth.
- Enhanced sales and marketing strategies to leverage Kronos’ industry-leading brand and penetrate national account chain restaurants
- Invested in product R&D capabilities to develop innovative new products, including new pre-cooked gyros products and hummus
- Closed add-on acquisition of Rain Creek Baking to expand into ethnic dessert category
- Built an industry-leading team that worked extremely well together
- Established appropriate corporate governance and accountability measures
- Implemented equity incentive plan for key members of the management team
- Consolidated multiple, poorly-equipped facilities into state-of-the art facility and invested in automation which added capacity for growth and production efficiencies
- Restructured purchasing strategies and distribution operations
- Simplified accounting systems and vastly increased data-driven analytics available to management
Management Team Additions
- Recruited eventual CEO in as President, grooming him to take over leadership of the company; developed into innovative, growth-oriented leader
- Recruited highly experienced COO to overhaul and lead operations
- Recruited top-flight CFO to revamp financial function, adding superior analytics capabilities
In 2016, Prospect Partners sold its interest in Kronos Foods for a significant gain to a larger private equity fund.
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