Snyder’s-Lance to buy Baptista’s Bakery

by Eric Schroeder
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CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Snyder’s-Lance, Inc. has agreed to acquire Baptista’s Bakery, Inc., a maker of baked snack foods and “better-for-you” snacks. Snyder’s-Lance said the transaction supports its efforts to sharpen its focus on branded products in growth categories such as “better-for-you” and other emerging products that are driven by consumer preferences and insights.

Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed. As part of the deal, Snyder’s-Lance will acquire 100% of Baptista’s Bakery, Inc. and its manufacturing facility in Franklin, Wis.

“Baptista’s is a leader in highly differentiated snacks, and we’re excited to be working with their talented, creative team,” said Carl E. Lee Jr., president and chief executive officer of Snyder’s-Lance. “Baptista’s is a company that has excelled in providing exceptional product quality and innovation while commercializing production in ways that are effective and unique.

“The team at Baptista’s is strong and dedicated, with many new product ideas that will be an excellent pairing for our brands. Our culture and values fit well with those of Baptista’s, which are focused on a dedication to employees and to the community. We are committed to retaining and growing the Franklin, Wis., facility, which is strategically well positioned within our network. By combining the resources and expertise of Baptista’s with the scale of Snyder’s-Lance, we will accelerate our ability to deliver exciting, on-trend snacks and product innovation while expanding our ‘better-for-you’ products and gaining needed capacity for our growing Snyder’s of Hanover pretzels.”

Nan Gardetto, c.e.o. of Baptista’s, said the transaction fits with the company’s goal of finding an organization that would be equally committed to Baptista’s people and community.

“Certainly we believe we have found an excellent steward for our business in Snyder’s-Lance,” Ms. Gardetto said. “The combination of Baptista’s quality and product innovation teamed with the marketing, sales and distribution capabilities of Snyder’s-Lance means our best accomplishments are yet to come. I am personally excited for our company’s future and the success that lies ahead.”

Completion of the transaction is subject to regulatory approvals as well as customary closing conditions and is expected to close in the second quarter of this year.

Baptista’s Bakery was established following the sale of Gardetto’s Bakery to General Mills, Inc. in August 1999. Gardetto’s had two facilities when it was sold, one in Milwaukee and the Franklin facility, which is a 135,000-square-foot plant built in 1997 on 26 acres of land. Ms. Gardetto named the company after her grandfather, Baptiste Gardetto, and her father, John Baptiste Gardetto.

Baptista’s manufactures sheeted and extruded snack products. According to the company, the products are baked, low in oil, salty or sweet snacks made primarily from potatoes, corn, rice, oats or wheat.
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