Boulder Brands' fund to aid industry startups
Financial terms of the new Boulder Brands Investment Group LLC, or BIG, fund were not disclosed. Niwot-based Boulder Brands (Nasdaq: BDBD) is partnering with Presence Marketing in South Barrington, Illinois, on the fund, the two companies said in a press statement.
Startup companies chosen for investment will operate independently from Boulder Brands, according to the press statement. However, such companies can take advantage of the Boulder Brands' infrastructure, resources and expertise, according to the press statement.
That "friendly equity" model will help new companies succeed, Steve Hughes, chairman and chief executive of Boulder Brands, said in the press statement.
"The formation of Boulder Brands Investment Group is central to our mission of changing the way we eat, one product at a time," Hughes said in the press statement.
Bill Weiland, founder and chief executive of Presence Marketing, will manage the fund, along with Duane Primozich, senior vice president for strategic initiatives for Boulder Brands, and Carole Buyers, senior vice president for investor relations and business development for Boulder Brands.
Boulder Brands previously was known as Boulder Specialty Brands Inc. The company had an initial public offering in 2005, and changed its name to Smart Balance Inc. in May 2007 when it acquired GFA Brands Inc., a privately held company which owned the Smart Balance and Earth Balance brands. Boulder Brands also owns Best Life, a weight-management brand.
The company is a heavy hitter in the gluten-free and natural-food categories, selling a variety of Udi's and Glutino breads and other gluten-free products, as well as Earth Balance products. Boulder Brands expects net revenue of $450 million to $460 million this year.
In 2010, Presence Marketing reported having 275 employees in various markets across the nation. The broker represents natural-food brands, including Justin's Nut Butter LLC in Boulder.
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