Bid deadlines for Hostess businesses set for next week

by Eric Schroeder
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IRVING, TEXAS — With buyers already lined up for the majority of its bread business and the Beefsteak brand, Hostess Brands, Inc. next week will find out the fate of the remainder of its businesses.

Qualified bids for the Hostess and Dolly Madison bids are due by 5 p.m. Eastern Time on March 11, with an auction, if necessary, set for 10 a.m. EST on March 13. A hearing at the bankruptcy court to approve the sale transaction has been scheduled for 10 a.m. EST on March 19. Under a purchase agreement announced Jan. 30, HB Holdings L.L.C., an affiliate of private equity groups Apollo Global Management L.L.C. and Metropoulos & Co., would pay $410 million for the Hostess and Dolly Madison snack cake business.

Qualified bids for the Drake’s brand are due by 5 p.m. EST on March 12, with an auction, if necessary, set for 10 a.m. EST on March 15. A hearing at the bankruptcy court to approve the sale transaction has been scheduled for 10 a.m. EST on April 9. McKee Foods Corp., Collegedale, Tenn., is the stalking horse bidder for the Drake’s snack cake business of Hostess with a bid of $27.5 million. Not included in the transaction are any production or other facilities, including the Hostess plant in Wayne, N.J., where Drake’s snack cakes were baked.

Qualified bids for the Northwest Bakeries business assets also are due by 5 p.m. EST on March 12, with an auction, if necessary, set for 10 a.m. EST on March 15. A hearing at the bankruptcy court to approve the sale transaction has been scheduled for 10 a.m. EST on April 9. Portland, Ore.-based United States Bakery, also known as Franz Family Bakeries, has been selected as the stalking horse bidder for several Hostess brands located in the Northwest, including Sweetheart, Eddy’s, Standish Farms, and Grandma Emilie’s. Under the agreement, United States Bakery would pay $28.85 million in cash for the brands, 4 baking plants, 14 depots and other assets.

Hostess in late February declared Thomasville, Ga.-based Flowers Foods, Inc. and its $360 million bid the winner for the largest bread brands and related assets of Hostess Brands, Inc., while Grupo Bimbo S.A.B. de C.V. emerged as the winner for the Beefsteak brand with a bid of $31.9 million. Both transactions now move to the next phase, which is a review and approval by the bankruptcy court overseeing Hostess’ bankruptcy case at a hearing scheduled for March 19.
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