Palladium Equity Partners Completes Sale of Second Nature Brands

New York, NY and Madison Heights, MI, April 26, 2022 – Palladium Equity Partners, LLC (along with its affiliates, “Palladium”), a Certified B Corp and the oldest minority-owned private equity firm with over $3 billion in assets under management today, announced that affiliates of the firm have completed the sale of Second Nature Brands (the “Company”), a Detroit-based platform of snacks and treats brands, to funds managed by CapVest Partners LLP (“CapVest”).

Second Nature Brands is a platform of best-selling snacks and treats brands: Kar’s Nuts®, Second Nature Snacks®, and Sanders Chocolates®. These iconic Detroit-native snack food brands, with a combined 230-year heritage, today comprise a company that is a leader in the fast-growing snacks and treats markets, focused on the nutritional and lifestyle needs of health-conscious consumers. Kar’s Nuts is the #1 branded trail mix delivering better-for-you, on-the-go fueling snacks; Second Nature Snacks is a pioneer in natural, non-GMO-verified premium snacks and trail mixes created for a healthy, on-the-go lifestyle; and Sanders Chocolates is a leader in premium, small-batch, kettle-cooked sea salt caramels.

Palladium, which focuses on transforming family and founder-owned businesses, partnered in 2017 with Nick Nicolay, whose family had owned Kar’s Nuts for over 50 years. Under Palladium’s ownership, Kar’s Nuts has grown from a regionally-focused provider of trail mix into a nationwide snacks and treats platform with category-leading positions under the Second Nature Brands banner. The Company recruited a world-class team led by Vic Mehren, built an in-house innovation engine, invested in expanding capacity, and acquired Sanders Chocolates, entering into the fast-growing premium confections category. Today, Second Nature Brands is seeking to continue its accelerated growth while carrying on the legacy of the brands’ founders and family traditions. 

“Palladium has been an excellent partner to Second Nature Brands, and was instrumental in driving our exciting growth over the past five years. Palladium has been a steward for the business, helping to support our growth while always ensuring that the Company maintains the heritage, culture, and family traditions that have made our brands special,” said Nick Nicolay, former Chief Executive Officer and current Chairman Emeritus. Vic Mehren, Chief Executive Officer, added, “As we look forward to partnering with CapVest in our next phase of growth, we thank the Palladium team for their extraordinary partnership. With their support, and through the efforts of our great Second Nature Brands team members, Second Nature Brands has transformed into a leader within Snacks and Treats.”

Alex Funk, Principal at Palladium, said, “We are very proud of the results that have been achieved at Second Nature Brands. Nick Nicolay, Vic Mehren, and the entire team have been outstanding partners throughout our ownership, and have grown the business into a true leader that we believe is well positioned for its next chapter of growth.”

Piper Sandler & Co. served as financial advisor to Second Nature Brands on the transaction. Greenberg Traurig, P.A. served as the Company’s legal advisor. Deloitte Corporate Finance served as advisor to the Board of Directors of Second Nature Brands.

The transaction terms were not disclosed.

About Second Nature Brands
Second Nature Brands is a leading creator of snacks and treats that make lives better, naturally. By investing in new product development, thoughtful ingredient sourcing, and innovative business processes, Second Nature Brands is reimagining premium and better-for-you snacks and treats. Under its growing family of brands, Kar’s Nuts®, Second Nature Snacks®, and Sanders Chocolates ®, Second Nature Brands has an extensive distribution network across the United States and a growing direct-to-consumer eCommerce presence. Currently, Kar’s Nuts® and Second Nature Snacks® are two of the best-selling trail mix brands in the nation, including the #1 selling Kar’s Sweet ‘n Salty Mix. Sanders Chocolates is one of the largest kettle-cooked, small-batch crafters of sea salt caramel treats in the U.S.  Find out more at Second Nature Brands (, Kar’s Nuts (, Second Nature Snacks (, and Sanders Chocolates (

About Palladium Equity Partners, LLC
Palladium is the oldest minority-owned private equity buyout firm in the industry with over $3 billion of assets under management. The firm seeks to acquire and grow companies in partnership with founders and experienced management teams by providing capital, strategic guidance and operational oversight. Since its founding in 1997, Palladium has invested over $3 billion of capital in 38 platform investments and 149 add-on acquisitions, realizing 23 of these platform investments. The principals of the firm have meaningful experience in consumer, services, industrials, and healthcare businesses, with a special focus on companies they believe will benefit from the growth in the U.S. Hispanic population. Palladium, which is a Certified B Corp, is based in New York City. For more information, visit

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