Dallas-based Rosewood Private Investments is adding Living Ecology, a producer of nutritional snack bars, to its growing portfolio of health food companies.
Acquired for an undisclosed amount, Nevada-based Living Ecology will become an affiliate of Rosewood’s Innovations in Nutrition + Wellness business.
“We look forward to offering INW’s customers new and expanded product format options, specifically in the functional foods markets, as nutritional bars become an increasingly popular dietary option for consumers,” said Rosewood Private Investments director Marquez Bela.
Rosewood Private Investments is the private equity arm of Caroline Rose Hunt’s estate, which has vast holdings in ranching, real estate, oil and other companies. The daughter of oil tycoon H.L. Hunt died in 2018 at age 95.
Living Ecology’s products can be found at Costco, Whole Foods and Starbucks. The acquisition will add two manufacturing facilities to INW’s footprint — one in Corona, Calif., and another in Henderson, Nev.
Rosewood started moving to capitalize on the growing adoption of health food in American diets by acquiring nutritional food brands several years ago. The director of Rosewood’s nutrition and wellness strategy said in 2017 that the firm planned to invest as much as $100 million in such investments.
It’s now invested nearly $150 million in nutritional food manufacturers through seven acquisitions, $40 million of which was supportive capital, Bela said, adding “we’re ahead of plans.”
The functional foods market segment, which includes health foods like grains and cereal with added nutritional elements, was a $9.6 billion category in 2019, according to Rosewood.
In 2017, Rosewood bought Irving-based health food manufacturer Healthy Natural from RiceBran Technologies for $18.3 million. It also acquired a majority stake in Quitman, Texas-based supplement manufacturer ProTec Laboratory that same year.
With the Living Ecology acquisition, INW now owns five manufacturing and research facilities throughout the U.S., including one in Carrollton and ProTec in Quitman. Its Carrolton facility specializes in research and production of personal care, dietary supplements, pet care, home fragrance, auto and household products.