JP Foodservice buys Buffalo firm Sorrento

Maryland Watch

January 27, 1998

JP Foodservice Inc. said yesterday that it has purchased Buffalo, N.Y.-based Sorrento Food Service. JP did not disclose a purchase price.

The Columbia-based food distributor became the second largest restaurant supply company in the nation after its merger with Rykoff-Sexton Inc. in December. Since then, JP's operating divisions have been conducting business as U.S. Foodservice.

Sorrento Food Service mainly serves western New York and western Pennsylvania markets, and had sales of about $100 million for the fiscal year that ended Dec. 31.

"It's a strategic acquisition, because it fills in a gap in our distribution network in northern and western New York," said Lew Hay, JP's chief financial officer. "We didn't have a distribution presence [in that area], but we have customers there."

Sorrento Food Service was a subsidiary of Besnier S.A., the largest dairy group in the European Union and a leading cheese manufacturer in the United States.

JP distributes food and other products to restaurants, hotels, health care facilities, and schools.

Pub Date: 1/27/98

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