Carr, Riggs & Ingram Capital Advisors (CRI Capital Advisors) acted as the sole investment banking advisor to the owners of Brooks Peanut Company, Inc. The company, comprised of multiple entities, was acquired by Olam International Limited (Olam), a leading international agribusiness at an enterprise value of $85 million.
Located in Samson, Alabama, Brooks Peanut Company, Inc. was founded in 1959 and grew to become the largest Alabama-based peanut sheller and the sixth largest in the United States. The company focused on the procurement, sales, and processing aspects of the peanut shelling business. Brooks Peanut Company became a fixture in the U.S. peanut industry, providing quality peanuts to some of the nation’s most notable food and candy manufacturers. Being a third-generation company, the owners were dedicated to finding a buyer that was willing to preserve its community-based commitment and family legacy.
In their search for a company buyer, the Brooks family was interested in more than just an exit strategy. The company had become a well-known employer in its community, and with close ties to numerous farmers in the area who provided them with peanuts, the Brooks family was committed to a strategy that preserved its legacy and honored its constituents that had contributed to the company’s growth over the decades. After discussing several elements that were important to the Brooks family, CRI Capital Advisors identified four objectives that would be essential to a successful transition of ownership for the Brooks Peanut Company:
In accordance with its leadership position in their respective industry, the company must be valued appropriately to coincide with its wide-ranging asset base and continued growth potential.
In light of the fact that this deal included a number of business entities and extensive fixed and real property assets, an exclusive buyout structure must be produced to provide effective tax treatment for the company’s owners.
Due to the company’s market position, maintaining confidentiality and precision is imperative as not to upset the competitive balance within the industry and risk any damage to customer, community, and supply chain relationships.
The acquirers must agree to continue operations of the Brooks Peanut Company in its current community and provide continued employment and career advancement opportunities for all company employees.
CRI Capital Advisors helped guide the Brooks family through the selling process as they considered the industry conditions, merger and acquisition (M&A) conditions, and capital markets. CRI Capital Advisors was able to create a marketing package for the company that incorporated a number of the owner’s requests for the future of Brooks Peanut Company and presented it to multiple strategic and financial acquirers. Olam emerged as the ideal candidate, offering the desired combination of value and continuity
that was sought by the Brooks family. Since Olam is headquartered in Singapore, CRI Capital Advisors was supported by its parent company Carr, Riggs & Ingram CPAs and Advisors to provide critical, international tax, diligence, and advisory support throughout the complex process of selling multiple entities to an international acquirer.