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Primo and Poland Spring owner BlueTriton agree to water merger

June 20, 2024

Primo Water and an affiliate of beverage company BlueTriton Brands are merging to create a diversified water giant with a presence in small portable bottles and large containers. BlueTriton’s brands include Poland Spring, Deer Park, Ozarka, Ice Mountain, and Pure Life, reports Food Dive.

The all-stock transaction will create a portfolio serving millions of consumers across different product formats, channels, price points, and usage occasions. The new company expects to have combined net revenues of $6.5 billion.

Blue Triton was formed in 2021 after Nestlé sold its North American bottled water business to private equity firms One Rock Capital Partners and Metropoulos & Co. for $4.3 billion.

As consumers turn away from sugary drinks in favor of better-for-you beverages, few companies are poised to benefit more than the newly combined Primo and BlueTriton entity. The companies noted in their release that retail sales of bottled water have grown from $17 billion in 2018 to $25 billion a year ago.

The new entity, they said, will bring together their “complementary strengths, creating a leader in North American pure-play healthy hydration.”

Together, the new firm will own nearly two dozen water brands, including Pure Life and Poland Springs, which are each $1 billion-plus products. It will deliver larger water containers to places like homes or offices, offer opportunities for consumers to fill or exchange containers at various locations, and deliver smaller bottles to locations such as grocery and convenience stores.

The merger will give the company a diversified presence across multiple channels—with 55% of revenue coming from retail, 25% from commercial, and 20% from residential. Primo and BlueTriton outlined multiple opportunities for growth, including the expansion into new channels and high-potential geographies; driving innovation in functional, flavored, and premium segments; and scaling of its fast-growing filtration business.

“The combined company will benefit from a diversified portfolio of iconic brands, a national footprint, and the strength of the combined delivery platform to better serve customers anywhere and any way they hydrate,” Robbert Rietbroek, CEO of Primo Water, said in a statement. “We are excited to combine Primo Water with BlueTriton to create a leading North American pure-play healthy hydration company.”

The new firm will be headed up by Dean Metropoulos, current chairman of BlueTriton, who will serve as nonexecutive chairman. Primo CEO Robbert Rietbroek will take the top post while David Hass, who currently is the CFO, will remain in the same role. The companies also said that BlueTriton’s Rob Austin will continue as COO.

The transaction is expected to close in the first half of 2025.

Research contact: @FoodDive