DALLAS-Fairmont Food Group, the Dallas-based company led by dairy veteran Bing Graffunder, has acquired DCI Cheese Co., Mayville, Wis., makers and marketers of brands that include Black Diamond and Great Midwest.

It is the first acquisition for Fairmont which was established in 2003 with $200 million in equity financing from GTCR Golder Rauner, LLC, Chicago.

"We see specialty cheese as an exciting category given its growth characteristics and recent trends," said Graffunder, a former president and COO of Morningstar Foods and Specialty Foods units of the Dean Foods Company. "We are most pleased to be partnering with Tim Omer and his extremely talented management team.

"Together we will continue to build DCI, creating a true industry leader providing value to both the customer and consumer base. Our strategy is to expand and grow the fine brands owned or managed by DCI, and to acquire selected partners to bring additional scale and value to DCI and its product offerings."

DCI Cheese has more than 25 years experience as a supplier of domestic and imported specialty cheeses. The DCI unique business model has evolved to comprise a portfolio of leading company-owned or exclusively managed brands, dedicated supplier partnerships and a full service consolidation warehouse program. CEO Tim Omer and his partners (Stacy Kinsley, Linda Hook and Dominique Delugeau) will retain an equity stake in the new venture and continue in their respective management roles.