Costa Farms Acquires Houseplant Producer Hermann Engelmann Greenhouses, Inc.

Hermann Engelmanns Sandra Kitain, Chuck Romagnoli and Erin Leonard
Hermann Engelmann’s Sandra Kitain, chief operating and financial officer; Chuck Romagnoli, chief executive officer; and Erin Leonard, director of marketing and business development.

Costa Farms has acquired the business, assets and brands of Hermann Engelmann Greenhouses, Inc. of Apopka, Fla., one of the country’s premier small-foliage growers.

Under the visionary direction of the Engelmann family, Hermann Engelmann Greenhouses has played a leading role in the indoor houseplant industry for more than 40 years.

“It’s a privilege to have the opportunity to work with a team that has been committed to quality for so many years,” says Jose Costa, executive vice president and co-owner of Costa Farms. “The Engelmann organization has done an outstanding job cultivating and keeping their brand strong with 40-plus years of hard work and dedication. We feel a huge component of this transaction is the skill and expertise of the Engelmann production team.”

With a network of more than 1,100 retailers, including mass merchandisers, grocery stores and independent garden centers, the company operates under nearly 69 acres of greenhouses and has roughly 300 employees.

“We’re proud of what our company has achieved in our 43-year history,” says Romagnoli. “We’re pleased to be working with Costa Farms because they share our dedicated work ethic and demand for quality. We can’t imagine a better company to continue moving our brand forward.”

According to Jose Smith, Costa Farms’ CEO, the company will be operating Hermann Engelmann Greenhouses as is for the next few months. Costa Farms will not start any integration until this summer, Smith says.

Costa Farms will keep all of the Hermann Engelmann operations intact, keeping greenhouses operational and staff changes minor. However, leadership changes may be on the horizon. Current Hermann Engelmann Greenhouses CEO Chuck Romagnoli is going to be transitioning into a different role, Smith says, adding that it’s up to Romagnoli how he will stay involved with the company. A member of the Costa Farms team will take on some of the general manager responsibilities with Hermann Engelmann.

Costa Farms will continue to support the Exotic Angel brand and look to build on its heritage, legacy and portfolio of more than 400 plant varieties.

“Being the most recognized houseplant brand in the country, Exotic Angel is a perfect complement to join the Costa portfolio of brands, such as O2 for You and Plants of Steel,” Costa says.

“The Hermann Engelmann folks have been developing Exotic Angel over many years. We’re excited about growing that brand,” Smith says.

The two organizations will combine their strengths to offer more quality solutions for retail customers and end consumers.

“We’re already a large foliage grower,” Smith says. “For the most part, we competed with Hermann Engelmann on several product lines. So this isn’t necessarily us doing an expansion on any product lines. I think it’s immediately upgrading on the product lines that we were doing. Although we were doing a good job in that category, these guys do a better job. I thought they were best in class when it comes to small foliage. That was the impetus really in moving forward and doing this acquisition.”

When asked what he thought of the perception that Costa Farms is monopolizing the Florida foliage market, Smith says, “We know that every single day we have to earn our customers’ trust by doing a great job to keep them happy. We know that people don’t have to buy foliage plants. If we’re not delivering solutions to our customers, at the end of the day we’re not going to be around.”

With this transition, the company will address the possibility of expanding its marketing services.

“We’re kicking around ideas about how we’re going to position the brand,” Smith says. “We’re figuring out exactly what the strategy is going to be. We want to grow our brand, but we’re not going to cheapen it. That’s for sure. It’s a great opportunity to do something special for the foliage industry.”

Topics: ,

Leave a Reply

More From Business Management...
cannabis-planted-in-a-greenhouse

September 29, 2016

The 10 Most Common Misconceptions About Greenhouse Cannabis Production

In an emerging market such as cannabis, there can be a lot of bad information out there. One greenhouse supplier points out some common myths.

Read More

September 28, 2016

Pennsylvania Greenhouse Grower Applying For Cannabis License

Allen Wagner of Wagner’s Greenhouse in Grandview, PA, hopes to become one of 25 applicants — among as many as 150 — chosen for a grower-processor license.

Read More
The-Capitol

September 28, 2016

How The November Election Might Affect The Legalization Of Cannabis

National polls indicate Americans are largely divided on the topic, while this year’s presidential candidates generally feel it’s a state issue.

Read More
Latest Stories
cannabis-planted-in-a-greenhouse

September 29, 2016

The 10 Most Common Misconceptions About Greenhouse Cann…

In an emerging market such as cannabis, there can be a lot of bad information out there. One greenhouse supplier points out some common myths.

Read More

September 28, 2016

Pennsylvania Greenhouse Grower Applying For Cannabis Li…

Allen Wagner of Wagner’s Greenhouse in Grandview, PA, hopes to become one of 25 applicants — among as many as 150 — chosen for a grower-processor license.

Read More
The-Capitol

September 28, 2016

How The November Election Might Affect The Legalization…

National polls indicate Americans are largely divided on the topic, while this year’s presidential candidates generally feel it’s a state issue.

Read More
Vogel Alcove NGB Therapeutic Grant Winner

September 27, 2016

National Garden Bureau Announces Horticulture Therapy G…

The NGB’s annual grant program, Growing for Futures, recently selected three therapeutic gardens that will receive grants totaling $5,000.

Read More
cuttings-facility

September 27, 2016

How Global Suppliers Of Unrooted Cuttings Are Working T…

The world’s top vegetative producers discuss how they continue to evolve to overcome challenges and embrace opportunities to help growers and the varieties supply chain.

Read More
Employees separate the plants by stem count, bud development and height. “This process allows us to respond more quickly to specific requests from customers,” Van Wingerden says

September 22, 2016

AmericanHort Hosting Webinar On Overtime Rule Complianc…

The webinar takes place on Thursday, Sept. 29. AmericanHort is also throwing its support behind the Overtime Reform and Enhancement Act.

Read More
customer-base

September 21, 2016

6 Creative Ways To Expand Your Business

Marketing experts offer tips to help you catch the attention of new customers and grow your business.

Read More
OSU ATI Greenhouse

September 21, 2016

Your Support Is Essential For Current And Future Studen…

September is back to school time, and that means renewed opportunity to support the young people who are electing to pursue careers in horticulture. I continue to hear from growers of all sizes, from all over the country, that there just are not enough qualified graduates of two- or four-year horticulture programs. We also need to be active in promoting careers in horticulture to those who are not aware of the opportunities available. There have been some great success stories in this area recently. At University of Florida (UF) last fall, Anna Ball and Dr. Marvin Miller of Ball Horticultural Co. joined UF’s Dr. David Clark in an introductory environmental horticulture couse that’s open to any major. After the class, the line of students waiting to talk with Ball, Miller, and Clark was out the door. It is so important, Ball says, for each of us, individually and collectively to […]

Read More
Pansy ‘Cool Wave Blue Skies’ (Wave)

September 20, 2016

PanAmerican Seed Settles Alleged Trade Sanction Violati…

PanAmerican Seed, a division of Ball Horticultural Co., has been charged with violating trade sanctions to Iran over a number of years. According to a release from the U.S. Treasury department, PanAmerican Seed made 48 indirect sales of seeds to two Iranian distributors. The company shipped the seed to consignees based in countries in Europe and the Middle East. PanAmerican Seed’s customers then arranged for the re-exportation of the seeds to Iran. The release states that the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) determined PanAmerican Seed did not voluntarily self-disclose the alleged violations to OFAC, constituting an egregious case. “We believe that the settlement was extreme; however the alternative was to litigate with the U.S. government, which would take months, if not years,” says Todd Billings, Chief Financial Officer for Ball Horticultural Co. When asked what Ball Horticultural Co. has done to ensure that violations to trade sanctions do not […]

Read More
young-plants

September 20, 2016

The Top Young Plant Growers, And Four Critical Challeng…

In Greenhouse Grower’s 2016 Top Young Plant Growers Survey, growers discuss the latest challenges and opportunities in fulfillment, shipping, labor, and crop protection.

Read More
Dual Income No Kids (DINK) Young Couple

September 16, 2016

What You Need To Know About DINKs

DINKs (Dual Income, No Kids) are quickly becoming one of the fastest-growing demographics that marketers are targeting.

Read More
MANTS

September 15, 2016

Registration Is Now Open For MANTS 2017 In Baltimore

The 2017 Mid-Atlantic Nursery Trade Show takes place Jan. 11-13 in Baltimore, MD, and will feature more than 1,000 exhibitors from the green industry.

Read More
farwest-2016-photobooth

September 14, 2016

Farwest 2016 Marked By Expert Discussions On Green Indu…

Attendance at the 2016 Farwest Show in Portland was up 6% from last year, as visitors sought to learn more about emergent market opportunities.

Read More
Workers at Golden State Bulb Growers clean Calla tubers and select the best quality bulbs, placing them on conveyors to be graded, counted and sorted in the new system

September 13, 2016

Newly Signed California Law Expands Overtime To Farmwor…

The new law, which will be phased in beginning in 2019, is the first of its kind in the nation to end the 80-year-old practice of applying separate labor rules to agricultural laborers.

Read More
RISE New Governing Board 2016

September 11, 2016

RISE Appoints New Leadership, Hands Out Awards During 2…

“Our members’ enthusiasm is high, and we had great engagement as we work together to set objectives for 2017 and beyond,” said Aaron Hobbs, RISE President. “Our work ensures a vibrant future for our industry, so we can continue to deliver cutting-edge solutions to solve people’s pest and plant health problems.”

Read More
Workers at The Farm at Green Village

September 10, 2016

Now Is The Best Time To Demand Federal H-2B Program Sup…

Congress is expected to pass a continuing resolution spending bill in the near future, and whether or not that measure includes an H-2B returning worker exemption could impact your labor supply for 2017.

Read More
Cavicchio Greenhouses

September 6, 2016

Cavicchio Greenhouses Wins Inaugural Sustainability Awa…

The Sudbury, MA, growing operation sustains more than 250 acres of annuals, perennials, and nursery stock, with a number of practices to mitigate its impact on the environment.

Read More
Charlie Hall Feature Image

September 6, 2016

10 Insights From Charlie Hall’s Green Industry Economic…

With the uncertain current economic climate, Texas A&M economist Charlie Hall says now may be the perfect time to invest — as long as you do it smartly.

Read More
[gravityform id="35" title="false" description="false"]