Fast-Growing Organic Food Startup Acquired by French Food-and-Beverage Giant
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A company that was recently named the fastest-growing woman-owned business by the Women President's Organization has been acquired as part of a deal that's said to be worth hundreds of millions of dollars.
French food-and-beverage giant Danone today announced plans to acquire a 92 percent stake in New York-based organic baby-food startup Happy Family. Launched on Mother's Day in 2006 by founder and chief executive Shazi Visram, Happy Family sells packaged organic foods such as yogurt and fruit purees for babies, toddlers and kids.
Danone is the maker of the popular Dannon brand of yogurts, including Activia and Oikos products, and sells bottled water brands such as Evian and Aqua.
Happy Family reported gross revenues of $62.8 million last year, nearly quadrupling the $13.3 million it reported in 2010 and up from less than $2 million in 2008, according to the WPO. In a statement, Danone said Happy Family holds more than a 4 percent share of the baby-food market and is poised for strong growth this year.
Visram came up with the idea for Happy Family after watching a friend struggle to find healthy foods for her newborn. The first product was an organic frozen baby food called Happy Baby. It has since expanded across age groups and is now sold in major U.S. retailers, including Whole Foods and Target. Visram will remain chief executive.
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