Ohio-based Blackwood Pet Food, a manufacturer of branded pet foods, together with contract manufacturers Ohio Pet Foods (OPF) and New York-based Southern Tier Pet Nutrition (STPN), recently partnered with Philadelphia private investment firm Graham Partners to create BrightPet Nutrition Group.

This new partnership will make BrightPet a leading developer and manufacturer of premium and super-premium pet foods and treats, serving US and international markets.

BrightPet leadership is already exploring growth opportunities within the quality-driven segments of the pet market, including product line extensions, facility enhancements and additional acquisitions. One of the few USDA-certified organic pet food and treat producers in the US, BrightPet will export to international markets, as well as serve US retailers and consumers.

The Golladay family — third generation founders of Blackwood, OPF and STPN — sees this partnership and the formation of BrightPet as an opportunity to share their quality recipes with new retail audiences — to elevate the standards of the pet foods and treats market.

“Our family’s commitment to quality pet food dates back generations,” says Matthew Golladay, president of the BrightPet Nutrition Group. “BrightPet represents our opportunity to meet the growing demand for premium and super-premium foods and treats. More than ever before, pet parents want the best for their four-pawed family members. BrightPet will deliver the quality pet foods and treats discerning consumers and retailers have come to expect from our companies. Our own recipes and the foods we make for others will continue to meet our family’s rigorous standards for quality.”

Joe Heinmiller, principal at Graham Partners, adds, “We are excited about the steady growth we’ve seen in the pet products industry. We look forward to working with the Golladay family to implement operational improvements, increase capacity and drive growth.”