About the client

After running stores across Vancouver Island for 46 years, 49th Parallel Grocery shareholders felt the time was right to sell their business. What originally started as a family-owned café, grew to a general supply store, and then under the current owners expanded to four locations. Today, 49th Parallel’s four grocery stores include over 380 employees and over 80,000 square feet of retail space.

Our advisors were brought in to help 49th Parallel achieve this and to lead the sales process. This involved coordinating the necessary documents, taking the business to market, and helping shareholders assess potential buyers.

Also locally-owned and operated, Country Grocer stood out thanks to its similar history—it started as a family-run business on Vancouver Island then grew to seven locations. Our team guided 49th Parallel through the steps needed to close the deal, along with providing tax advisory services.

Country Grocer will now operate a total of 11 stores across Vancouver Island and is committed to continuing 49th Parallel's legacy. This transaction brings together two family businesses with the shared goal of providing quality products and services along with competitive pricing to their communities.

Deal summary

Client

Client

49th Parallel Grocery

Transaction type

Transaction type

Divestiture

Services provided

Services provided

M&A

Sector

Sector

Food and Beverage retail

Close date

Close date

February, 2023

The client experience

"Selling our business was a big step for our family. Luckily, working with Grant Thornton’s team meant we could feel positive in our decision. There are many steps involved in the sales process, so having advisors on-hand to address our questions and explain everything helped put us at ease. We’re delighted with how the transaction was run—from finding a buyer to closing the deal and managing all complexities in between—and how everything turned out.

We can now look forward to seeing 49th Parallel become part of a larger, multi-generational, family business. Country Grocer is the ideal ownership group to keep the independent voice alive and well here on Vancouver Island! We’re thankful for the support we received to make the deal happen and would certainly recommend Grant Thornton if you’re the owner of a family business and looking to sell."

Peter Richmond, President & CFO of 49th Parallel Grocery

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