Popular artisanal Firehook Bakery acquired by private equity firm

Firehook Bakery in Dupont Circle. (Courtesy Google Street View/Firehook Bakery)

Firehook Bakery, whose first artisanal bakery opened in Alexandria, Virginia, in 1992, has been acquired by Greenwich, Connecticut-based private investment firm Forward Consumer Partners for an undisclosed sum.

Pierre Abushacra, founder of the family-owned business, retains a minority ownership stake in the company.

Firehook has three retail stores now: two in Virginia, in Old Town Alexandria and Chantilly, as well as a D.C. location in Dupont Circle. Its packaged crackers are sold at grocery stores and other retailers, as well as nationwide online. It also sells its breads and products through wholesale channels.

Firehook gets its name from hook-shaped tools ancient bakers used to pull baked goods out of clay pots in fire pits.

Forward Consumer Partners did not disclose plans for expansion, but has brought on industry veterans to help lead the company, including former Tate’s Bakery CEO Maura Mottolese as chief executive, and Ellen Howse, formerly of Godiva, Hello Products and Dewey’s Bakery as chief marketing officer.

The Firehook acquisition is the first for Forward Consumer Partners’ $425 million Fund I investment fund raised last year, which closed oversubscribed.

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Jeff Clabaugh

Jeff Clabaugh has spent 20 years covering the Washington region's economy and financial markets for WTOP as part of a partnership with the Washington Business Journal, and officially joined the WTOP newsroom staff in January 2016.

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