Cornell Capital’s Corelle Brands to acquire Instant Brands

CPE Media News (3/4/2019) – Corelle Brands, LLC, a portfolio company of Cornell Capital, has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Instant Brands, the maker of multicooker the Instant Pot®.

Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed. The transaction is expected to close in April 2019.

Founded in 2009 by Dr. Robert Wang, Yi Qin, Dongjun Wang, Ottawa based Instant Brands specializes in designing and marketing innovative small kitchen appliances for busy home cooks who live a health-conscious and eco-friendly lifestyle.

Instant Brands will retain its Ottawa headquarters. Ken Wilkes will be CEO of the combined company and Robert Wang will serve as its Chief Innovation Officer.

Rosemont, Illinois based Corelle Brands and its affiliates manufacture and market products worldwide through a portfolio of brands including Pyrex®, Corelle®, CorningWare®, Snapware®, Chicago Cutlery®, and Olfa®.

In May 2017, Cornell Capital and affiliates acquired a controlling interest in Corelle Brands, formerly WKI Holding Company, Inc. (World Kitchen).

photo credit: Instant Brands

News Release

Instant Brands to Merge with Cornell Capital’s Corelle Brands
Combination of Instant Pot®-Maker and Corelle Brands Further Strengthens Impressive Portfolio of Iconic Brands

ROSEMONT, Ill. and KANATA, Ontario, March 4, 2019 /PRNewswire/ — Corelle Brands LLC (“Corelle Brands”), a leading manufacturer and marketer of such iconic houseware brands as Corelle®, Pyrex®, SnapWare® and CorningWare®, and Instant Brands, maker of the most-loved multicooker the Instant Pot®, today announced the signing of a definitive agreement under which Instant Brands and Corelle Brands will merge.

The transaction creates a world-class, fast-growing housewares company with a comprehensive suite of products and accessories for all steps of the culinary process, from meal planning with recipes, preparing ingredients and cooking food to serving meals and storing leftovers. Since acquiring Corelle Brands in April 2017, Cornell Capital has worked with the company’s management team to strengthen its leading market position, suite of quality products and world-class marketing, service, distribution, sourcing and order fulfillment capabilities, while bolstering Corelle Brands’ commercial position in Asia.

Founded in 2009 and headquartered in Ottawa, Ontario, Instant Brands specializes in designing and marketing innovative small kitchen appliances for busy home cooks who live a health-conscious and eco-friendly lifestyle. Known for its multi-functional and signature Instant Pot®, which combines up to 10 different appliances into a single product, Instant Brands has experienced tremendous growth and become a leading brand in the small kitchen appliance industry as it expands its customer base and diversifies its lineup of products, including its cooking blender, multicooker, sous vide immersion circulator and related accessories.

Instant Brands will retain its Ottawa headquarters. Ken Wilkes will be Chief Executive Officer of the combined company and Robert Wang will serve as its Chief Innovation Officer.

“As one of the fastest-growing small kitchen appliance brands in the world, Instant Brands has established itself as a leader in innovation and its high-quality products have become a staple in kitchens in North America, fundamentally changing how consumers think about cooking,” said Ken Wilkes, Chief Executive Officer of Corelle Brands. “We are excited to work with Robert and the rest of the talented Instant Brands team in providing operational and marketing support and access to our global sales network to accelerate multi-channel and new product growth as part of the Corelle Brands family.”

“We are thrilled to partner with a global market leader in Corelle Brands as we look to embark on our next chapter of strategic growth and expansion,” said Mr. Wang, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Instant Brands. “With an international footprint, integrated supply chain and unique sourcing, design, R&D and comprehensive marketing capabilities, Corelle Brands and Cornell Capital will be true partners in supporting our innovation and expanding product development pipeline. In addition, this combination will allow us to better service our retail customers to meet their evolving needs and capitalize on exciting new demographic and market opportunities.”

“Significant growth in home cooking continues to fuel demand for exceptional Instant Brands products, as demonstrated by Instant Brands’ tremendous social following of millions of dedicated users. Instant Brands’ products have become synonymous with quality and versatility,” said Henry Cornell, Founder and Senior Partner of Cornell Capital. “This partnership creates a leading housewares company with compelling opportunities for further growth by leveraging Corelle Brands’ best-in-class platform and the proven leadership team’s decades of experience in building market-leading brands. I look forward to working with Ken, Robert and the rest of Corelle Brands and Instant Brands management to achieve these strategic growth objectives.”

Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed. The transaction is expected to be completed during the second quarter of 2019.

Stifel is acting as financial advisor and Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP is acting as legal advisor to Corelle Brands in connection with the transaction. CIBC acted as exclusive financial advisor and Dentons Canada LLP acted as legal advisor to Instant Brands in connection with the transaction.

About Corelle Brands LLC
Headquartered in Rosemont, Ill., Corelle Brands LLC (the US operating subsidiary of Corelle Brands Holdings Inc.) and its affiliates manufacture and market products worldwide through a portfolio of well-recognized and respected brands, including Pyrex®, Corelle®, CorningWare®, Snapware®, Chicago Cutlery®, and Olfa®. Corelle Brands and its affiliates employ approximately 3,000 people, and have major manufacturing and distribution operations in North America and Asia-Pacific regions.

About Instant Brands
Instant BrandsTM, the makers of the best-selling Instant Pot®, is driven by a commitment to provide cooking solutions that help our generation live a fast paced, health oriented and eco-friendly lifestyle. Product-by-product, Instant Brands is transforming the housewares industry through consumer-driven innovation and comprehensive brand extensions. Instant Brands product line includes the best-selling Instant Pot pressure cookers, Aura multicookers, Ace blender, Accu sous vide, and Wi-Fi enabled cooking products. For more information on products that can make your life easier, please visit www.InstantBrands.com.

About Cornell Capital
Cornell Capital LLC is a private investment firm that takes a value-driven approach to investing. Partnering with strong and entrepreneurial management teams, the firm seeks opportunities in market- leading businesses across the consumer, financial and industrial sectors. Founder and Senior Partner Henry Cornell, who served as the Vice Chairman of Goldman Sachs’ Merchant Banking Division prior to founding Cornell Capital in 2013, leads a highly seasoned senior leadership team with decades of shared investing experience. The firm currently manages over $2.8 billion of assets and has offices in New York and Hong Kong. For more information, visit www.cornellcapllc.com.

Contact
Jonathan Keehner / Julie Oakes / Tim Ragones
Joele Frank, Wilkinson Brimmer Katcher
212-355-4449

SOURCE Cornell Capital LLC

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