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Katy Perry-backed food products firm Bragg explores sale, sources say

Breakthrough Prize awards in Los Angeles

By Abigail Summerville

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Bragg Live Food Products, which is backed by celebrities Katy Perry and Orlando Bloom, is exploring a sale that could value the maker of apple cider vinegar at more than $500 million, including debt, according to people familiar with the matter.

The Santa Barbara, California-based company, which also counts investment firm Swander Pace Capital among its investors, is working with Bank of America to solicit interest from potential buyers, which include private equity firms, the sources said, speaking on condition of anonymity.

Swander Pace and Bank of America declined to comment. Bragg did not respond to requests for comment.

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Founded in 1912 by Paul Bragg, the company is known for its apple cider vinegar products, as well at its salad dressings, seasoning blends, olive oil, beverages and other food ingredients.

Patricia Bragg, Paul's adopted daughter, led the business for 65 years, until it was sold in 2019 to Perry, Bloom and other investors including Dragoneer Investment Group and Pressed Juicery founder Hayden Slater.

Bragg's products are sold through supermarkets, e-commerce retailers and natural foods stores in the United States and in other countries.

The company's owners are expecting to command a valuation for Bragg equivalent to at least 10 times the company's earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization of about $50 million, the sources said.

The food ingredients sector has been an active area for dealmaking in recent months. Private equity firm Butterfly Equity is exploring a sale of Chosen Foods, while Falfurrias Capital is running a sale process for Sauer Brands, Reuters has previously reported.

(Reporting by Abigail Summerville in New York; Editing by Anirban Sen and Will Dunham)