Lanco Enters Agreement To Be Acquired

Top 40 supplier Lanco will continue operations and plans to maintain current employee levels under a deal through which the assets of the Ronkonkoma, NY-based firm would be purchased by NC Chocolate Manufacturing, an affiliate of Nassau Candy, which is the parent company of Chocolate Inn/Taylor & Grant (asi/44900), Counselor learned this afternoon. Financial terms of the deal are not being released.

On Nov. 3, Lanco filed a Workers Adjustment & Retraining Notice with the New York State Department of Labor that said it would be closing its facility and laying off workers by Dec. 1. The filing was one component of what principals at Nassau Candy say is a debt restructuring process that Lanco is going through after having fallen on hard times. As the WARN filing indicated, economic reasons were driving the company to explore new financing options. 

Nassau Candy Principal Lance Stier said that under the purchase agreement, which could be finalized within the next 60 days, the current Lanco facility will stay open and the approximately 130 employees will continue serving the promotional products industry. Lanco will continue to go to market under its name. In the interim, NC Credit Co., an affiliate of Nassau Candy, will be providing financing to the company. 

Lanco President Scott Slade did not respond to multiple requests for comment from Counselor regarding the WARN filing, but after a Counselor breaking news alert went out with details about it, he released a prepared statement:  “We have secured financing to enable Lanco to continue operations. We have restocked inventory levels, are supporting customers and fulfilling orders in their entirety. Through the planned sale to NC, we will retain our employees and continue the great legacy of Lanco.” 

David Miller, President of Chocolate Inn/Taylor & Grant, said distributors should feel secure in Lanco’s future, especially because of his organization’s success with acquisitions of industry suppliers. Acquisitions by the group have included A La Carte in 2015, as well as Amusemints and Private Label Executive Gifts Inc. in 2017. Chocolate Inn/Taylor & Grant came together in a strategic merger in 2011 and have engineered strong sales ever since. “People can feel comfortable that a qualified, experienced company will be guiding Lanco into the future,” said Miller.