Arbor Investments (“Arbor”), a specialized private equity firm that focuses exclusively on investing in food, beverage and related industries announced today the sale of Fund III & Fund IV portfolio company Greco and Sons and its family of foodservice distribution companies (collectively "Greco" or the "Company") to Sysco Corporation (NYSE: SYY).
Founded in 1990 and headquartered in Bartlett, Illinois, Greco is a leading Italian-focused importer, manufacturer and distributor of food and disposable products to the foodservice industry. Through a comprehensive offering of more than 15,000 products, including their proprietary Greco and Bellissimo brands, the Company is a one-stop shop for customers within target segments. Greco operates 10 distribution centers servicing 22 geographies and nearly 8,000 customers including independent restaurants, pizzerias, hotels, country clubs, quick serve establishments, bars, schools and grocery stores.
Arbor partnered with the Greco family, led by CEO Eddie Greco, in early 2017 with a vision to leverage the Company’s exemplary customer service reputation and differentiated product offering to create the leading national Italian distributor. Greco’s value creation playbook alongside Arbor included expanding the Company’s footprint from three to nine regions, completing 20 acquisitions, and fueling organic growth with significant infrastructure investments in people, facilities and technology. The Company experienced hyper growth during Arbor’s ownership with sales more than doubling, adding $500 million in incremental new business.
“We’re extremely proud of Greco’s transformation over the last four and a half years,” said Greco Chairman and Arbor co-founder Joseph Campolo. “When Sysco approached us, it was clear they would not only be a great home for Company management but also the right partner for our customers and suppliers.”
Reflecting on the Greco partnership Campolo added, “I have been fortunate to partner with many phenomenal families and entrepreneurs over the years and the Greco family’s dedication to achieving excellence is unparalleled. The Company’s relentless focus on customer service yielded enviable growth during the pandemic and is a true testament to what can be achieved when our partner entrepreneurs harness Arbor’s collective resources to achieve industry leading results.”
"We enjoyed an outstanding partnership with Arbor," commented Eddie Greco. "Their strategic support was instrumental in accelerating our growth and geographic expansion. At their core, the Arbor team are entrepreneurs and their likeminded, roll up your sleeves mentality made them the ideal partner for our family."
Arbor co-founder and CEO Gregory Purcell concluded, “The blueprint for Arbor’s most successful investments consists of partnering with the best family owners and entrepreneurs and bringing our unique resources to turbocharge growth. This transaction represents a big achievement for the Greco family and another success for Arbor.”
Kirkland & Ellis LLP served as Arbor's legal counsel on the transaction.