The J.M. Smucker Company’s $1.9 Billion Acquisition of Ainsworth Pet Nutrition

Kirkland & Ellis represented global private equity firm L Catterton in its joint sale with the Lang family of Ainsworth Pet Nutrition to The J.M. Smucker Company (NYSE: SJM) for $1.9 billion.

L Catterton, the largest and most global consumer-focused private equity firm in the world, has entered into a definitive agreement to sell Ainsworth Pet Nutrition (“Ainsworth”) to The J.M. Smucker Company (“Smucker”) (NYSE: SJM) for $1.9 billion.

The transaction is subject to customary closing conditions including receipt of required regulatory approvals.

Founded in 1933, Ainsworth Pet Nutrition is a fifth generation, primarily family-owned and operated company headquartered in Western Pennsylvania and focused entirely on pets. With a goal of changing the way consumers shop for super premium pet food, Ainsworth’s mantra is “Pet Store Quality. Supermarket Easy.” They achieve this promise by providing consumers with the high-quality pet food where they currently shop for the rest of their families. The company makes multiple brands and types of dog and cat food, including the Rachael Ray™ Nutrish® line, as well as super premium retailer-specific brands. Ainsworth Pet Nutrition is committed to food safety and prepares all of its dry pet food in the United States using high-quality, natural ingredients with added vitamins and minerals.

L Catterton, formerly known as Catterton Partners Corporation, is a private equity and venture capital firm specializing in financing acquisitions, late stage, mature, management buyouts, recapitalizations, turnarounds, and growth capital in middle market companies. The Firm, led by Scott Dahnke, J. Michael Chu and Frank M. Vest Jr. , is based in Greenwich (CT).

The Kirkland team was led by corporate partners Joshua Kogan (Picture) and Andrew Arons, and associates Andrew Kimball and Jeff Zhang.


Involved fees earner: Joshua Kogan – Kirkland & Ellis; Andrew Arons – Kirkland & Ellis; Andrew Kimball – Kirkland & Ellis; Jeff Zhang – Kirkland & Ellis;

Law Firms: Kirkland & Ellis;

Clients: L Catterton;



Author: Ambrogio Visconti