The Hershey Co., has made a huge leap into the jerky market. The primarily chocolate company has acquired  KRAVE Jerky from Alliance Consumer Growth, a leading consumer-focused investment firm.

"We are proud of the growth and success that KRAVE has experienced working with ACG," says Jon Sebastiani, ceo, KRAVE. "ACG has been a key advisor, helping KRAVE define and execute its strategic plan, expand marketing and distribution and improve operating capabilities. We have enjoyed our partnership with ACG and look forward to continuing our growth with Hershey."

ACG first invested in KRAVE in 2012. Since then, the company has led a renaissance in the meat snacks category to become the fastest-growing jerky brand in America.

"Jon Sebastiani and the KRAVE team have done an extraordinary job building the company," says Julian Steinberg, managing partner at ACG. "We are thrilled with the rapid growth and development of the brand over the last two years."

The company increased its distribution in both new and existing regions as well as launched highly successful marketing and branding campaigns with ACG. In 2015, Forbes called it one of America's most promising companies.

"KRAVE has revolutionized jerky by driving new consumers into the category and redefining jerky as a ‘better-for-you,’ high-protein snack," Steinberg adds. "This transaction represents a terrific outcome for all involved, and we are confident that KRAVE will continue to thrive for years to come under Hershey's ownership."