An Israel-based private equity firm plans to put together a platform for flexible produce packaging after recapitalizing StePac L.A. Ltd.
Terms of the deal were not disclosed. StePac is a Tefen, Israel-based company with operations in San Diego. The new owner, Nili Capital Partners, bought StePac from London-based Johnson Matthey plc, a publicly traded company that specializes in sustainable technology.
Johnson Matthey had purchased the business from DS Smith plc for $20 million in 2015.
StePac films help extend the shelf life of fresh produce. Its modified-atmosphere/modified-humidity packaging brands include Xtend, Xflow and Xgo.
Asaf Shachnai, CEO of StePac, said the acquisition marks a "major step" in his company's goal of becoming "a leading global force" in modified-atmosphere packaging. Shachnai will be CEO of the new platform company, MAPfresh Holdings Inc.
Ben Adler, general partner at Ra'anana, Israel-based Nili, said trends in fresh produce and a push for sustainable packaging drew his firm's attention to StePac.
"We are excited to partner with Asaf and his team," Adler said. "Stepac is a category leader in a fragmented industry with many consolidation opportunities. It is the perfect company to serve as the heart of our new fresh produce packaging platform and is another shining example of Israeli innovation."