Haltom, TX and Greenwich, CT – February 3, 2010 – Sun Water Systems, Inc., the maker of Aquasana, the #1 rated home water filtration system in America, and Catterton Partners, one of the leading consumer-focused private equity firms in North America, today announced that Catterton Partners has acquired Sun Water Systems. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
Founded in 1998, Sun Water Systems, through its Aquasana brand, has become an industry leader in the $2.7 billion water filtration category. The Company’s Aquasana brand, which is backed by 15 years of research and development and 17 patents, is the #1 home water filtration system in the United States and has been voted a “Best Buy” by Consumers Digest magazine six years in a row . In addition to Aquasana, the Company also designs and manufactures water filtration products under alternative brands label for a number of companies in the U.S. and abroad. The Company’s products, which are recognized for their consumer value and superior water quality, include drinking filters (countertop and under the counter), shower filters, whole house filters, and related accessories.
Scott Dahnke, Managing Partner of Catterton Partners, said, “Consumers’ desire for products that advance safety and control and promote health and wellness is driving explosive growth in the demand for residential water filtration systems. With Aquasana, we are partnering with an industry leader in this highly attractive category, while also extending our portfolio with another company that addresses consumers’ growing sensitivity to the environment. By investing in the strong and growing Aquasana brand and capitalizing on the Company’s direct marketing platform, we see significant opportunities to accelerate Aquasana’s growth and market expansion.”
Charles Strand, Founder of Sun Water Systems, said, “Our agreement with Catterton Partners represents an exciting opportunity to further build on the record of growth that we have achieved. In looking for a partner who could further propel Aquasana, we were impressed by Catterton’s success and experience growing numerous other strong consumer brands. I am very proud of what our team has accomplished and equally excited about the additional upside that I am confident we will capture with Catterton’s strategic and financial support.”
In addition to Sun Water Systems, Catterton Partners’ current representative investments in health and wellness focused companies include O.N.E. (One Natural Experience), a provider of premium, all-natural functional beverages; Breyers Yogurt Company, the largest independent yogurt company and one of the most widely recognized yogurt brands in the U.S.; and Healthy Advice Networks, the largest and fastest growing health information company in the U.S. Catterton’s realized investments in health and wellness-focused companies include Odwalla, the leading health beverage brand in the U.S.; Kettle Foods, maker of America’s best-selling all-natural potato chips; and Wellness Pet Food, the leading all-natural pet food company. Catterton’s current representative investments in other environmentally focused companies include MonoSol, the world leader in developing and commercializing specialty water-soluble products, TechTurn, a leader in the data erasure, remanufacturing, remarketing and environmentally-safe recycling of personal computers; and Naya Waters, the only bottled water company producing FDA-approved 100% recycled plastic bottles.
About Catterton Partners
With more than $2.3 billion under management, Catterton Partners is a leading consumer-focused private equity firm in North America. Since its founding in 1989, Catterton has leveraged its investment capital, strategic and operating skills, and network of industry contacts to establish one of the strongest private equity investment track records in the middle market consumer industry.
Catterton Partners invests in all major consumer segments, including Food and Beverage, Retail and Restaurants, Consumer Products and Services, and Media and Marketing Services. Representative investments that Catterton Partners has led include Breyers Yogurt, Cheddar’s Restaurants, Heartland Recreational Vehicles, O.N.E. (One Natural Experience) beverages, Nature’s Variety Pet Food and Restoration Hardware. Representative realized investments include Baja Fresh Mexican Grill, Build-A-Bear Workshop, Frederic Fekkai, Kettle Foods, Odwalla, P.F. Chang’s China Bistro and Wellness Pet Food.
More information about the consumer-focused private equity firm can be found at http://www.cpequity.com.
Sun Water Systems
Carla Stanmyre McDonald
Eric Brielmann / Andi Salas
Joele Frank, Wilkinson Brimmer Katcher