The Hershey Co. and B&G Foods Inc. have entered into a definitive agreement for Hershey to acquire Pirate Brands, including the Pirate’s Booty, Smart Puffs and Original Tings brands, for $420 million. The transaction is expected to close in the fourth quarter of 2018.
“Pirate’s Booty is a leading cheese puffs brand loved by moms and kids as a better-for-you treat,” said Mary Beth West, chief growth officer at Hershey. “We expect the full Pirate Brands portfolio to be a great fit for Hershey’s growing Amplify business, which is targeted toward consumers who are looking for great-tasting snacks without compromise.”
Pirate’s Booty is a fast-growing brand in the more than $2.5 billion cheese puffs category, with retail sales up more than 8 percent on a year-over-year basis. It is a market leader for consumers seeking snacks with clean labels and no artificial flavors, colors or preservatives, say the companies.
“Pirate Brands is a terrific business that has performed very well for us, and we believe it will continue to thrive under the ownership of The Hershey Company,” said Robert C. Cantwell, president and CEO of B&G Foods. “The transaction we are announcing today is a great example of our ability to create meaningful shareholder value through accretive M&A by acquiring and investing in on-trend food brands. We acquired Pirate Brands in 2013 for approximately $195 million and thanks to the passion, creativity and hard work of our dedicated team of employees, we have more than doubled the value of the business in five short years, creating tremendous value for our shareholders.”
Pirate Brands will operate within Amplify, Hershey’s better-for-you snacking hub in Austin, Texas, which is focused on driving growth in the warehouse snacking aisle with “unique product flavors and forms” like Skinny Pop, Paqui and Oatmega.