May 07, 2021
CHICAGO, IL – MAY 7, 2021 | Tilia Holdings (“Tilia”), a Chicago-based private investment firm focused exclusively on the food and nutrition supply chain, completed its investment in Wheat Parent, Inc. (“Wheat Montana” or the “Company”) from River Associates on April 30, 2021. Founded in 1978 and headquartered in Three Forks, Montana, the Company develops and produces better-for-you breads, buns, and flours with clean-label attributes including non-GMO, organic, and locally sourced ingredients. Wheat Montana has developed a strong and stable base of leading customers across its fresh distribution, frozen foodservice, and retail milling channels.
Laura Carden, CEO of Wheat Montana, and the current executive leadership team will continue to lead the Company. “Wheat Montana is thrilled and inspired to be writing our next chapter with Tilia. Their passion for food, experience, and knowledge of the industry will provide the key ingredients to dramatically expand our business. We are excited to be part of such an extraordinary group of business leaders and look forward to the energy and expertise they can add to our business and our terrific team. Tilia and Wheat Montana – the perfect recipe for success!”, said Ms. Carden.
Johannes Burlin, Co-CEO of Tilia who will serve as Chairman of the Board, said, “Tilia is excited by the opportunity to partner with Wheat Montana. Over more than three decades, Wheat Montana has built strong brand recognition, leadership in its regional market with its expanding offering of premium and high-quality baked and milled products, and a diverse set of customers. The company has demonstrated that it is positioned to meet the growing consumer demand for locally-sourced and clean-label products. The investment in Wheat Montana aligns with Tilia’s mission to invest in companies that help make the food supply chain safer, more nutritious, and more sustainable.” Eric Larson and JD Elder of Tilia have also joined the Board of Wheat Montana.
Eric Larson added, “Wheat Montana has strong roots in its home state. One long-time customer told us the first time he heard the term “Farm to Fork” was from Wheat Montana…long before it was even a popular phrase. With locally grown grains and locally produced baked goods, the company has always been an innovator, which has resulted in superb customer relationships and an impressive product offering. The Tilia team is excited to be the partner Wheat Montana has chosen as it continues to develop this unique business.”
Mayer Brown LLP served as legal counsel to Tilia, while TCF National Bank and True West Capital Partners provided debt financing in support of the transaction. Lincoln International served as exclusive financial advisor to Wheat Montana.
ABOUT WHEAT MONTANA
Wheat Montana is a leading provider of premium bakery and milled products. The Company offers a variety of clean-label, non-GMO and organic grains, flours, mixes, and fresh and frozen bread products to retail and wholesale customers throughout the United States. For more information on Wheat Montana, please visit www.wheatmontana.com.
ABOUT TILIA HOLDINGS
Tilia is a Chicago-based private investment firm focused exclusively on building distinctive middle- market companies that provide outsourced, technical services across the global food and nutrition supply chain. Through an interdisciplinary approach to investing, Tilia partners with companies providing technical business services that support leading and emerging CPG brands. Tilia’s investment team has complementary skills across operations and finance and provides expertise in scaling and growing middle-market companies. Tilia’s deep sector focused strategy is a successful approach to investments that spans almost three decades and approaches each investment as a steward by employing a consistent set of principles to improve capital across four dimensions: brand, human, social and financial. For more information, please visit www.tiliallc.com.