Says snack segment ‘is ripe for innovation and growth’,
Photograph courtesy of H.K. Anderson
HANOVER, Pa. — Utz Quality Foods LLC has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire certain assets of the H.K. Anderson peanut butter-filled pretzel business from Conagra Brands Inc.
The acquisition, with a purchase price of less than $10 million that will be funded from current cash-on-hand, enables Utz Brands to jumpstart its entry into the growing filled-pretzel segment, leveraging the synergies of its salty-snack platform, the company said.
“The approximate $100 million filled segment of pretzels is ripe for innovation and growth,” said Dylan Lissette, CEO of Utz Brands. “As we look to increase our share in the rapidly expanding salty-snack category through new products and geographic growth, this type of acquisition is tailor made for the synergies and growth opportunity afforded by our platform.”
The deal includes intellectual property specific to the H.K. Anderson brand and does not include employees, facilities or equipment. The transaction is expected to close in November, subject to customary closing conditions.
While traditional versions of pretzels continue to enjoy popularity, increased consumer snacking presents opportunities to accelerate momentum in the pretzel category through innovation, Utz said. According to IRI, dollar sales of pretzels increased 10% to $1.4 billion, based on data for the 52 weeks ending Sept. 6, an increase of more than $120 million vs. a year ago.
Based in Hanover, Pa., Utz Brands operates 14 facilities in Pennsylvania, Alabama, Arizona, Illinois, Indiana, Louisiana, Washington and Massachusetts.
Conagra Brands Inc., Chicago, is one of North America’s leading branded food companies. Its brand portfolio includes Birds Eye, Marie Callender’s, Banquet, Healthy Choice, Slim Jim, Angie’s Boomchickapop, Duke’s and more.
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