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Schweppe Bought by Alliance Paper & Foodservice

Lombard, Ill.-based foodservice equipment and supplies dealership becomes a subsidiary of Alliance Paper & Food Service.

Alliance Paper & Food Service, of Franklin Park, Ill., has acquired Schweppe Kitchen Equipment & Supply, a Lombard, Ill.-based foodservice equipment and supplies dealership. The financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

As a result of the deal, Schweppe will function as a subsidiary of Alliance, which is a broadline distributor of foodservice-related disposables, supplies and equipment. "We plan on keeping the Schweppe name around," said Brian J. Flynn, president and chief executive officer of Alliance Paper & Food Service. "Schweppe is a foodservice company with an excellent reputation for integrity, service, quality and fair prices. These are operating guidelines that mirror our own. It was a natural choice for us."

Although this was an asset purchase, Flynn pointed out that Schweppe was a healthy company and all debts were satisfied. "They, along with so many in the contact business, have had a rough go due to the economy. But they are making a comeback and are off to a strong start this year. I think 2012 will be a very good year for them," Flynn said. "I have known the Schweppe family for years and through some small talk one thing led to another and we eventually got this deal done."

In fact, Flynn sees acquiring Schweppe as a growth opportunity for Alliance. "We are looking for continued growth in our market," he said. "And acquiring Schweppe gives us some more account penetration opportunities. They have a good book of business in the Chicago market and they have some longevity."

Flynn added Alliance had been looking for an opportunity to expand its presence in the foodservice equipment and supplies industry. "We had always dabbled in the foodservice equipment and supplies business and have been looking for a way to enter that market place and become competitive."

Schweppe customers will notice very little difference aside from the Alliance name on delivery trucks and a broader selection in the store and on the website, according to a company statement. In addition, roughly 95 percent of the Schweppe employees, including those Schweppe family members still active in the business, made the transition to the new company, according to Flynn.

Schweppe operates a 40,000 square foot cash and carry location in Lombard. Alliance also operates a cash and carry facilility – located in Chicago's Randolph St. Market area.

In 2010 Schweppe reported annual sales of $13 million, making it the 82nd largest foodservice equipment and supplies dealer in the country, according to FE&S' 2011 Distribution Giants Study.