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Naturawls Pet Products Acquired by Private Equity Firm

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It’s the third in a series of similar deals.

MISSISSAUGA, ONTARIO — Dane Creek Capital Corp., a merchant banking venture with a focus on the pet industry, has acquired Naturawls Pet Products, a  St. Thomas, Ontario-based manufacturer of raw pet food and dehydrated pet treats for dogs and cats.

The purchase price was not disclosed. Dane Creek said in a press release that it represents 0.9 times trailing 2017 revenue.

Under terms of the deal, Dane Creek will pay a portion in cash and the remainder in equity from its subsidiary United Raw Pet Food Inc. United Raw was created as a wholly owned holding company for Dane Creek’s interests in alternative pet foods.

Dane Creek “will retain a substantive majority interest in United Raw post-transaction,” according to the release. The founder and CEO of Naturawls, Mark Murakami, will continue as CEO and also assume the role of president of United Raw.

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Naturawl’s raw pet food and dehydrated treats are sold under the NatuRAWls brand; dehydrated pet treats are also sold under the brand name Nothing Added. The products can be found in pet specialty retail stores including PetSmart, Pet Valu, and Global Pet Foods locations throughout the province. 

The transaction marks Dane Creek’s third acquisition of a Canadian raw pet food manufacturer in less than a year. In the fourth quarter of 2017, the company acquired Mountain Dog Enterprises Inc., the Edmonton, Alberta-based manufacturer of Mountain Dog Food brand raw pet foods. In January of this year, it acquired Pets4Life, the St. Thomas, Ontario-based raw pet food manufacturer directly adjacent to Naturawls. With the acquisition of Naturawls, Dane Creek will now work with Murakami to combine the manufacturing operations of the two companies into one larger and more efficient operation. All three raw pet food manufacturers are held by United Raw.

“I am very pleased to be joining the team at Dane Creek,” says Murakami. “We have an exciting opportunity to create scale in the raw food industry with multiple brands and multiple manufacturing facilities across Canada. We will be able to give pet owners the ‘local flavour’ they want and greater access to variety while at the same time offering better logistics in support of efforts by both retailers and distributors to grow the raw food industry in Canada.”

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