Vistar, a division of Performance Food Group, Inc. (PFG), will acquire Liberty Distribution Co., LLC. The acquisition brings together two distributors of candy, snacks and beverages. Liberty is based in Chandler, Ariz., with additional locations in Mechanicsburg, Pa. and Memphis, Tenn. Liberty was founded in 1998 by Jim Schweikert and is one of the nation’s leading distributors of candy and snacks to national and regional retail establishments. The transaction is expected to close by the end of June.
Liberty employs approximately 150 people at its three locations.
George Holm, president and CEO of Performance Food Group, said in a prepared statement, “Liberty is a well-respected organization whose values are aligned closely with Vistar and the entire PFG organization. Serving customers with unique requirements is something Liberty does extremely well and Liberty will be an integral part of Vistar’s continued success.”
Patrick Hagerty, president and CEO of Vistar, added, “We have long admired Liberty. They pioneered the availability of candy and snacks to non-perishable retailers. This category is now commonplace in retail industries where it was virtually unknown just 15 years ago. We are excited to be adding the entrepreneurial spirit of Liberty’s management team and we are confident that they will be instrumental in helping Vistar meet its long term growth strategy.”
James Schweikert, founder and CEO of Liberty, noted, “I am pleased and proud that we have been successful in bringing these two great companies together. This transaction ensures that the commitment to integrity, customer service and execution, which have been the hallmarks of Liberty Distribution, will continue into the future with the greater financial strength and market breadth that Vistar provides.” Concurrent with this transaction, Schweikert has announced his decision to retire from Liberty; however, he will remain in an advisory capacity as Liberty joins the Vistar team. Liberty will remain a standalone company under the direction of Robert Armstrong, who is currently the chief operating officer and will become president at the close of the transaction.