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Bankrupt Hostess Reportedly Will Name Two PE Firms as Twinkies Bidders

Apollo Global Management and C. Dean Metropoulos may be named the lead bidders for Twinkies and other Hostess snack brands

Bankrupt Hostess Brands Inc. will reportedly name private equity firms Apollo Global Management and C. Dean Metropoulos & Co. as the lead bidders for Twinkies and other snack brands.

Reports indicate that Apollo and Metropoulos beat out numerous competitors, including Grupo Bimbo, for the stalking-horse position.

Hostess had not filed bidding procedures with the bankruptcy court for Twinkies as of Jan. 30 in the afternoon.

The baker has already named stalking horse bidders for its Drake’s snack brand and bread brands.

McKee Foods Corp. is the stalking horse bidder for Drake’s, with a $27.5 million bid. The Drake’s assets include the Coffee Cakes, Devil Dogs, Funny Bones, Ring Dings, Sunny Doodles, Yankee Doodles and Yodels brands. 

Mountain States Bakers LLC, is the lead bidder for Hostess’ Sweetheart, Standish Farms, Grandma Emilie’s and Eddy’s bread brands with a $28.85 million bid, court documents show.

If Hostess’ bidding procedures for those sets of assets are approved, McKee and Mountain will head to a March 15 auction.

On Jan. 11, Hostess named Flowers Foods Inc. as the stalking horse bidder for the majority of its bread business, including Wonder bread. The Tastykake owner bid $360 million for 20 bakers and the Butternut, Home Pride, Merita, Nature’s Pride and Wonder bread brands, plus submitted a separate $30 million bid for the Beefsteak rye-bread brand. 

Flowers is headed to a Feb. 28 auction.

Hostess decided to wind down operations after it failed to resolve issues with striking bakers’ union. The Bakery, Confectionery, Tobacco Workers and Grain Millers International Union (BCT) and other unions started striking on Nov. 9, which caused the company to lose between $7.5 million and $9.5 million in a matter of weeks, according to court documents. The strike came after troubled negotiations regarding collective bargaining agreements (CBAs).

The baker filed for bankruptcy protection on Jan. 11, 2011. When the company sought bankruptcy protection, it operated 36 bakeries, 565 distribution centers, 5,500 delivery routes and 570 bakery outlet stores in the U.S.

Hostess, founded in 1930, was one of the largest wholesale bakers and bread distributors in the U.S. In addition to Twinkies, the company’s brands also include Dolly Madison, Twinkies and Drake’s. 

Jones Day is debtor counsel. Kramer Levin Naftalis & Frankel LLP is counsel to the committee of unsecured creditors. Hostess has retained Hilco Trading LLC to sell real estate, machinery and equipment.

 

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