Investor Group Buys Wisconsin Cheeseman

An eight-member investor group bought food gifts cataloger Wisconsin Cheeseman on April 18. The Sun Prairie, WI-based merchant had been owned by the Cremer family since the company was founded in 1947.

Gary Ricco, the CEO of dessert and beverage manufacturer Jel Sert Co., headed the investor. He told the “Wisconsin State Journal” that the group, Wisconsin Food Gift Co., plans to grow Wisconsin Cheeseman by expanding its Web presence and product line.

Wisconsin Cheeseman employs 170 workers. According to Hoover’s Business Directory, the company recorded $36.4 million in sales last year. Its data card states that it has nearly 72,600 12-month buyers, 64% of whom are women, who spend an average of $70 an order.

Holly Cremer Berkenstadt, chairwoman of the Wisconsin Cheeseman board of directors, said in a statement that “the Cremer family was presented with an opportunity which they believe is in the best interest of the company, its employees, and its customers. The opportunity will provide the resources necessary to support growth.” Berkenstadt’s parents, Garvin and Helen Cremer, started the company in their kitchen table.