By Jordan Valinsky, CNN
New York (CNN) — Kim Kardashian’s private equity firm has announced its first investment: A company that makes truffle-infused sauces that sell for about $20 a bottle.
SKKY Partners, the company she formed last year with a former executive at Carlyle Group, has acquired a “significant minority stake” in Truff sauces. The six-year-old brand has recently grown in popularity for its condiments that extends from hot sauce to mayonnaise.
In a press release Tuesday, SKKY called Truff a “premium flavor-enhancement brand” and said that its “distinctive flavor, high-quality ingredients, new product innovation and social following” have made the brand an attractive investment target.
“Truff is exactly the kind of business that embodies what we were looking for when we founded SKKY — a next-generation brand with a deep, authentic connection with consumers and the potential for ongoing growth,” Kardashian said. “We’re proud to be kicking off the SKKY portfolio with this investment.”
Launched in 2017, Truff has expanded beyond its direct-to-consumer model and now sells its sauces at Target, Whole Foods and Publix. The sauce brand has recently had high-profile collaborations with Taco Bell for a custom hot sauce and Hidden Valley for a special dressing.
The transaction also includes adding Mark Ramadan, the cofounder and former CEO of Sir Kensington’s condiments, to Truff’s board. He helped sell that brand, best known for its fancy ketchups, for a reported $140 million in 2017 to Unilever.
Financial terms of Truff’s deal with SKKY weren’t disclosed and is expected to close early next year.
SKKY’s investment is a “big vote of confidence in the business and its founders,” according to Neil Saunders, retail analyst and managing director at GlobalData Retail.
“Truff has been one of the growth stars of the consumer packaged goods world and has managed to boost its appeal and reach without sacrificing the more premium positioning of its brand,” Saunders told CNN. He added that the addition of Ramadan is a “major benefit” because of his “very strong pedigree in consumer goods.”
Kardashian started SKKY in 2022 with Jay Sammons, a 16-year veteran of global private equity firm Carlyle. However, it hadn’t made any investments and had remained largely quiet on its ambitions until now.
SKKY said in a release that the firm’s “primary focus is on identifying culturally relevant brands that forge deep emotional connections with their target consumers and offer those consumers coveted products and services.”
Investment targets include companies in health and wellness, food and beverage as well as apparel.
Kardashian’s business expertise extends beyond private equity. Skims, her underwear and apparel brand, recently launched a line for men. Expanding beyond a customer base of women is a possible prelude to an initial public offering for the company; however, nothing has officially been announced.
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