Brown Gibbons Lang & Company (BGL) is pleased to announce the sale of Starwest Botanicals (Starwest) to Incline Equity Partners. BGL’s Food & Beverage investment banking team served as the exclusive financial advisor to Starwest in the transaction. The transaction furthers BGL’s expertise in botanicals and spices — and more broadly, the food ingredients sub-sector. The specific terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
Starwest Botanicals was founded in 1975 as a small retail shop in Sacramento, California, with a focus on selling higher quality botanicals, herbs and spices at competitive prices. In 1979, the company built its first milling equipment to have better control over processing and quality control. In 1980, Starwest began importing from several different countries around the world, supplying manufacturers and wholesalers, and supporting the fledgling organic ingredients industry. In 1983, Starwest was named to Inc. magazine’s “Top 500 Fastest-Growing Private Companies” list. Prior to the acquisition, the company was one of the largest independently-owned, vertically integrated, value-add processors and suppliers of organic botanicals, herbs, and spices in the United States, with nearly 200,000 sq. ft. of modern warehouse and production space.
Starwest is uniquely positioned as a full-service provider due to its extensive global supplier network, international organic import expertise, in-house quality control testing, and customizable processing and packaging capabilities. The company serves as a one-stop-shop solution to a diversified base of more than 10,000 customers, with access to over 3,000 SKUs in various forms (whole, cut, powder, etc.) and packaging formats (bulk, wholesale, and single-serve). Unique in-house processing and quality control systems ensure superior product quality, while also providing the ability to satisfy a multitude of customer product specifications.