Sara Lee saved from administration

The famous brand will continue its long history of manufacturing in Australia.
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Australia’s go-to frozen dessert brand, Sara Lee, has been saved from administration three months after the news was first made public. 

WATCH NOW: Donna Hay makes a baked cheesecake on MasterChef Season Three. Article continues after video.

New business owners Klark and Brooke Quinn said they “couldn’t be more proud to put the Aussie-made and owned stamp on the Sara-Lee brand.”

“We are [just] a small Aussie family that shared in the tradition of having Sara Lee apple pie and vanilla ice cream every Sunday night at a dinner table,” they said in a statement announcing the exciting news.

In 2012, the Quinn family was also involved with the acquisition of Darrell Lee after it fell into voluntary administration. 

Then in 2018, they sold the business for approximately $200 million to Quadrant Private Equity.

Sara Lee vintage advertisement for their original pound cake. (Credit: Sara Lee)

As well as preserving the iconic dessert business, the purchase of Sara-Lee by the Quinn family has also saved more than 200 jobs at the manufacturing facility in Lisarow, NSW. 

“Sara Lee is an iconic brand and category leader,” administrator Vaughan Strawbridge said when confirming the exciting news that the dessert business would be saved.

“Staff and consumers have rallied behind the business during this tough time, and we are so grateful to the loyal workforce and management team who have made this process a success while they have continued to produce amazing products.”
“We have enjoyed working with the Sara Lee team and are pleased to see them come through this process. Many staff have been with Sara Lee for a long time and we have seen their passion for the business,” he added.
“We look forward to its future success.”
Sara Lee Australia cheesecake, yum… (Credit: Sara Lee)

Who started Sara Lee?

Sara Lee was founded by two American brothers, Charles Lubin and his brother-in-law, Arthur Gordon after they bought three small bakeries in Chicago, called Community Bake Shops. 

What made Sara Lee famous?

Twenty years later it wasn’t until 1951, when Charles created the famous Sara Lee All Butter Pound Cake that put Sara Lee on the map. Two years later in 1953, they created a world-first process for keeping their baked goods frozen for longer while they are distributed.

Why is it named Sara Lee?

Charles Lubin named his baking company after his daughter, Sara Lee.

Who owns Sara Lee Australia?

McCain Foods, who bought Sara Lee Australia in 2013, sold the company to New Zealand investment company South Island Office in 2021.

After collapsing into voluntary administration in October 2023, the business was then purchased by the Quinn family in January 2024.

Sara Lee was named after founder Charles Lubin’s daughter, Sara Lee. (Credit: Sara Lee)

What is Sara Lee known for?

Sara Lee is known for creating bulk batches (and smaller portions) of Cheesecakes, Bavarians, Pies, Crumbles, Puddings, Danishes, Cakes, Bakery, Icecream and Semifreddo.

When was Sara Lee founded?

Sara Lee was started in 1932, almost 100 years ago.

When did Sara Lee come to Australia?

Sara Lee has made desserts for Aussies for more than fifty years, since 1971.

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