General Merchandise/HBC

Acosta Sales & Marketing Grows With Regional Acquisitions

CPG agency expands foodservice, e-commerce divisions

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Acosta Sales & Marketing, a leading full-service sales and marketing agency in the consumer packaged goods (CPG) industry, has announced the acquisition of several foodservice companies and sales and marketing agencies.

It has acquired Juhl Brokerage, Plymouth, Minn., and Mid-State Food Brokers, Liverpool, N.Y. The combined organizations will integrate with Acosta's rapidly growing foodservice division and will extend the coverage of the company's sales and marketing services across the East and Midwest.

Acosta entered the foodservice channel in March 2012 and since that time has steadily built a strong presence across the country. Complemented by Juhl Brokerage, with operations in Minnesota; North Dakota; South Dakota; Nebraska; Montana; and Iowa; and Mid-State Food Brokers, with operations in upstate New York, Acosta's foodservice division spans the majority of the United States.

"We are pleased to announce we are expanding our foodservice footprint with the addition of these leading regional companies," said Mark Hayden, Acosta's foodservice division president. "These organizations, with their superior talent, experience and track records, will help us continue to build the leading foodservice platform in the U.S. and provide our clients with top-notch sales and marketing services."

Acosta also recently acquired Firebird Foods, a meat and deli sales agency based in Phoenix. Integrating with Acosta's strategic focus on fresh foods, the combined organization will extend the company's services both at Kroger and in the West region.

"The acquisition of Firebird Foods reinforces Acosta's strategy of finding the best sales and marketing agencies in each market and providing linkage to a national platform with robust business insights, analytics and comprehensive merchandising services," said John Dunne, senior vice president of client development for fresh foods. "This partnership will allow us to add to our diverse and talented group of associates, and will help us continue to create retailer alliances for our clients across the country in the perimeter categories of their stores."

With more than 700 associates focused on fresh foods, Acosta provides comprehensive sales, marketing and merchandising coverage in the industry. It has grown its fresh foods division through a combination of organic growth and strategic acquisitions of local market agencies, resulting in a national footprint of local departmental experts.

Greg Creek, president of Firebird Foods, and his team, will be based out of Acosta's Phoenix office. Creek will continue to be active in leading Acosta's Fresh Foods business in this market. With more than 25 years of industry experience, Creek started Progressive Sales & Marketing in 1995 and in 2004, the business was merged with Firebird Foods Inc. to form Firebird Foods LLC.

Also, Acosta has announced it has acquired Global Sales, a premier sales and marketing agency for, and other key e-commerce retailers.

Global Sales will become a division of Acosta with Mark Staudacher as president, reporting to Mike Anderson, president of Acosta's natural foods division, Natural/Specialty Sales. Global Sales will maintain its U.S. headquarters in Seattle.

"Global Sales' extensive experience, in the CPG industry and beyond, will not only expand our reach into the ecommerce channel, but also increase the breadth and depth of sales and marketing capabilities we deliver to our clients," said Acosta's president and CEO Robert Hill. "Global Sales' long history of success, clear direction and focus on critical details will be of particular importance as we look to help our clients prosper in the e-commerce channel."

For more than 25 years, Global Sales has represented brands and products through the specialty and natural channels regionally to Northwest grocery stores and nationally to

Jacksonville, Fla.-based Acosta provides outsourced sales, marketing and retail merchandising services to top CPG brands. With approximately 32,000 associates in more than 75 locations throughout the United States and Canada.

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