Specialty food distributor Good Source adds Gold Star Foods to its portfolio

USA – Good Source Solutions, a leading specialty food distributor owned by private equity firm Highview Capital has acquired Gold Star Foods from private equity firm, Castle Harlan, to expand its its portfolio.

The acquisition, made through its parent company Highview Capital, will see Gold Star Foods merge with Good Source – headquartered in Carlsbad, California. Terms of the sale were not disclosed.


Castle Harlan acquired Gold Star, headquartered in Ontario, California, in April 2014 and oversaw its expansion to become the largest US food distributor focused primarily on K-12 schools and a source of value-added services and knowledge of USDA school food programs.

Since the acquisition, Castle Harlan has expanded the reach of Gold Star by upgrading the management team, acquiring two more food distributors and instituting warehouse productivity programs.

The firm has also opened a 188,000-square-foot food distribution center in Northern California.

In addition, Castle Harlan then purchased Colyar Technology Solutions, a leading designer, developer and marketer of food distribution and compliance-management software for the K-12 school markets. 


Gold Star and Colyar developed Cartewheel, an integrated, seamless technology solution for use in school menu planning.  

Gold Star, under Castle Harlan’s ownership, grew by 57 percent in net sales and 153 percent in EBITDA.  It currently serves about 4.2 million meals daily.

“In partnership with Castle Harlan, Gold Star has grown to be the premier school nutrition solutions provider,” said Sean Leer, CEO of Gold Star. 

“We are looking forward to our next chapter with Highview Capital and Good Source, where we will leverage our collective strength to establish a new leader in specialized foodservice distribution for the K-12, corrections and other value-focused end markets.”

“Gold Star has been a highly successful investment for Castle Harlan and its limited partners,” said David Pittaway, vice chairman of the firm. 


“In addition to its distribution growth, today it offers technology solutions for states and school districts that no other company provides.”

Castle Harlan will retain ownership of Colyar, which facilitates management of USDA child nutrition programs in 27 states. Colyar is a leading company focused on nutrition software.

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