Chicago group buys 75% ownership stake in pet food company with Harvard ties

Nutrition company ADM now has ownership stake in Harvard’s Pedigree Ovens plus the Pound Bakery, PetDine and NutraDine

A Chicago-based company on Thursday finalized its acquisition of a 75% ownership stake in four pet food companies, including Harvard’s Pedigree Ovens.

Nutrition company ADM now owns a stake in PetDine, Pedigree Ovens, the Pound Bakery and NutraDine, according to a news release announcing the agreement. The transaction, which values the four enterprises in their entirety at about $600 million, closed Thursday, ADM spokeswoman Jackie Anderson said in an email Friday.

“Annual global sales of pet food total $110 billion, [which is] forecast to grow to $140 billion by 2026 – with pet treats an even faster-growing category,” Vince Macciocchi, president of ADM’s nutrition business, said in the release. “We’ve grown to meet that demand. ... Now we’re taking the next step in our strategic journey with a majority investment in P4.”

Pedigree Ovens and Pound Bakery owner Kurt Stricker owned and operated a retail wholesale bakery for 15 years before he began to produce “human-like” treats for pets, according to PetDine’s website. Stricker went on to start Pedigree Ovens and the Pound Bakery in 1997. Now, as PetDine’s director of production, Stricker oversees the Harvard facility, according to the website.

As a part of the agreement, ADM also will acquire the companies’ more than 300,000 square feet of production and innovation facilities in Illinois and Colorado, according to the release.

The agreement additionally includes an option under which the parties could agree for ADM to purchase the remaining 25% at an agreed-upon market price in the coming years.

“ADM’s global resources – from ingredient supply chain, transportation and their emerging pet nutrition platform – are what we were looking for in a partner,” Stricker said in the release. “We are excited to continue our strong growth path together.”

Last year, the Pedigree Ovens facility in Harvard became home to a massive solar panel system with different colored panels arranged in the shape of a dog bone and paw print.

The project later was recognized as the commercial and industrial solar project of the year.

Katie Smith

Katie Smith

Katie has reported on the crime and courts beat for the Northwest Herald since 2017. She began her career with Shaw Media in 2015 at the Daily Chronicle in DeKalb, where she reported on the courts, city council, the local school board, and business.