Save Mart Companies acquired by Kingswood

Marianne Wilson
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The Save Mart Companies operates roughly 200 stores throughout California and Northern Nevada.

The Save Mart Companies has a new owner.

The Modesto, Calif.-based grocery store company has been acquired by Kingswood Capital Management LP, an “operationally minded” private equity firm based in Los Angeles. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Save Mart Companies operates roughly 200 stores throughout California and Northern Nevada. The company operates locations under three banners: Save Mart, Lucky California and FoodMaxx.

In addition to its retail operation, the company also operates Smart Refrigerated Transport and is a partner in Super Store Industries, which owns and operates a distribution center in Lathrop, Calif., and the Sunnyside Farms dairy processing plant in Turlock, Calif.

"I'm excited for this opportunity with Kingswood to invest in and grow The Save Mart Companies family of stores," said Chris McGarry, CEO of The Save Mart Companies. "The Piccinini family did a tremendous job in fostering a commitment to innovation and service as they built and grew this company in the Central Valley and throughout California. While this change in ownership will be transparent to our team and customers, we know that this investment will benefit them and the communities we serve."

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With the addition of Save Mart, Kingswood is expanding its existing Northern California presence. It already owns Alameda-based Cost Plus World Market, which it acquired in January 2021 from Bed Bath and Beyond. It also owns Mare Island-based Lind Marine, a diversified marine services business headquartered north of the San Francisco Bay, which it recapitalized in January 2022.

"At Kingswood, our goal is to make good businesses even better, and The Save Mart Companies presents us with a great opportunity to do so," said Alex Wolf, managing partner and founder of Kingswood. "Their 70 years of history in the Central Valley provides a strong foundation for future profitable growth, and we look forward to working with Chris and the team to position these iconic grocery brands for the future."

Kirkland and Ellis, LLP served as legal advisor to Kingswood on the transaction.