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Pet Supplies Plus Acquired by Private Equity Firm

The company has 448 stores.

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NEW YORK – Pet Supplies Plus, the third-largest pet specialty chain in the U.S., has been acquired by private equity firm Sentinel Capital Partners.

Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Founded in 1988 and headquartered in Livonia, MI, PSP is a leading franchisor and operator of pet-specialty stores.

Serving 33 states, PSP’s system includes 448 stores, split evenly between franchised and company-owned locations. The company is billed as the largest “independent” pet-specialty operator in the country.

“PSP is the #1 pet franchise system in the U.S. with an expanding footprint and a large white-space opportunity,” said Marc Buan, a Sentinel principal. “The pet industry is very attractive due to its stability, growth, and passionate consumer base. PSP has a strong position in the pet retail segment and a very loyal customer base. Led by a highly committed and talented management team, PSP has delivered consistent performance and steady growth. We are excited to partner with PSP during the next phase of its growth.”

Chris Rowland, CEO of Pet Supplies Plus, said, “PSP combines the convenience, expertise, and high-touch experience of a local neighborhood pet store with the curated selection and value of a national player. We look forward to partnering with Sentinel, a firm with deep franchising expertise, to help us drive revenue growth and geographic expansion.”

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Sentinel has broad experience investing in franchise businesses. Sentinel has acquired 13 franchise investments in its history, including:

  • Border Foods, a franchisee in the Taco Bell system.
  • Captain D’s, a franchisor and operator of more than 500 Captain D’s seafood restaurants.
  • Checkers, a franchisor and operator of dual drive-thru quick service restaurants.
  • Cottman Transmission Systems, a franchisor of automotive transmission centers.
  • Falcon Holdings, the largest franchisee of Church’s Chicken restaurants.
  • Fazoli’s, a regional franchisor and operator of Italian fast-casual restaurants.
  • Interim Healthcare, the nation’s largest provider of home healthcare and supplemental healthcare staffing services Huddle House, a franchisor of family dining restaurants.
  • Massage Envy, the nation’s largest franchisor of therapeutic massage services.
  • Newk’s Eatery, a franchisor and operator of fast-casual restaurants in the Southeast.
  • Southern California Pizza Company, the exclusive Pizza Hut franchisee in the greater Los Angeles market.
  • TGI Fridays, a global franchisor and operator of iconic American-style bar and grill restaurants.
  • Tony Roma’s, a franchisor of casual dining restaurants.

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Headlines

The Real Reason Mars Inc. Loves the Pet Care Business

It’s known historically for candy but increasingly makes its money in pet care.

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Mars Inc., which is well known for candy brands such as M&M’s, is staking much of its future to its pet care business, Bloomberg reports.

Pet care now accounts for about half of the company’s business, CEO Grant Reid told the news outlet. Among the McLean, VA-based company’s brands are Whiskas and Pedigree.

The pet care industry may be a good refuge for privately held Mars as increasingly health-conscious consumers turn away from sugary treats, Bloomberg reports.

The company “avoids marketing [its candy] to children and was the first to place nutrition labels on the front of packaging,” according to the article.

That’s “the right thing to do,” Reid said, noting that “we want to be transparent.”

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There’s also synergy in that candy and many pet care products are sold at similar retail points, Bloomberg notes.

Mars has grown its pet care business in part through acquisitions. In January 2017, for example, it announced that it was paying more than $9 billion for VCA Inc., a company that operates animal hospitals.

Read more at the Bloomberg

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Pet Franchise to Open 50 Stores in 2019

It has over 200 units under development.

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PHOENIX — Dogtopia, a dog daycare, boarding and spa franchise, sold 100 units and opened 25 locations in 2018.

The Phoenix-based company now has over 200 units under development, according to a press release. It plans to open at least 50 stores in 2019.

So far, the brand has sold over 30 new stores in January, according to the release.

“Dogtopia is outpacing every pet franchise in North America and we were delighted about delivering another record year,” said Alex Samios, vice president of franchise development for Dogtopia. “Our unparalleled service, support and systems, combined with exceptional franchisees, has positioned us as the leading pet services brand.”

Dogtopia currently has more than 90 locations.

The brand also grew in 2018 in terms of its charitable initiatives with the Dogtopia Foundation, raising more than $150,000 to sponsor training for service dogs for veterans.

The company was recently named to Entrepreneur’s Franchise 500 list. Dogtopia ranked at No. 204 “as a result of its outstanding performance in areas of unit growth and financial performance with strong franchisee support,” according to the release.

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Petco to Carry Champion Products

Their partnership begins March 4.

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SAN DIEGO, CA — Petco and Champion Petfoods announced a partnership that will bring Champion’s Acana and Orijen dog and cat foods to Petco stores and petco.com beginning March 4.

“Champion is an extremely mission-driven company that’s built a well-deserved reputation for serving up award-winning foods for dogs and cats, and their ACANA and ORIJEN brands align perfectly with the bold nutrition standards we announced late last year,” said Petco CEO Ron Coughlin. “As a leader in providing pets and pet parents with everything they need to live healthy, happy lives together, we’re thrilled to add industry-leading brands for anyone who wants to feed their pets the healthiest foods available.”

Petco recently announced that it will not sell food or treats containing artificial colors, flavors and preservatives for dogs and cats by May 2019.

“We are extremely excited to partner with Petco, a company with such a strong reputation and commitment to ensuring the well-being of pets and peace of mind to pet lovers,” said Champion President and CEO Frank Burdzy. “This new relationship is an important step toward our goal of building trust and making our Biologically Appropriate foods available to more pet lovers everywhere.”

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Petco Chief Merchant Nick Konat said, “Consumer and industry response to Petco raising the bar on our nutrition standards has been phenomenal, and the addition of ACANA and ORIJEN to our portfolio are significant proof points in our ongoing journey to be pet parents’ trusted partner of choice.”

Petco operates more than 1,500 retail locations and employs 26,000 people across the U.S., Mexico and Puerto Rico.

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