Grand Rapids-based snack food maker Cheeze Kurls Inc. has been acquired by a Florida private investment firm.
Former Cheeze Kurls co-owners — President Timothy Dedinas and Vice President Robert Franzak — retained a minority ownership and remain in advisory roles with the company.
Kilroy Partners of Boca Raton, Fla., invests across a variety of sectors in entrepreneurial, family-owned and non-institutionally controlled businesses in the lower middle market.
In an announcement, Franzak described Kilroy Partners as the right buyer for Cheeze Kurls. Previous potential buyers have proposed closing the plant and moving operations out of state, though Kilroy Partners will maintain the company’s Grand Rapids operations, Franzak said.
“When we met with them, they provided a vision for us with what they wanted to do with the company and how they wanted to expand. The key thing for us was Kilroy keeping the employees we had on hand at the time,” he said. “That was number one with us — keeping the business in Grand Rapids and keeping the employees. The employees will reap the rewards of the growth that Kilroy will set forth here. Because of their mission, we decided to go with them and we feel confident with what they are going to do.”
Dedinas’ and Franzak’s fathers — Edward DeDinas and Robert Franzak — founded Cheeze Kurls in 1964. The two grew up with the company, acquired it in 1999 and led multiple expansions. The need for another expansion was one of the factors that led to the company’s sale, Franzak said.
M&A firm NuVescor Group LLC represented Cheeze Kurls in the transaction. Terms of the deal were undisclosed.