Sweet Deal: J.M. Smucker Buys Hostess Brands for $5.6 Billion

Hostess, famous for Twinkies, gets a sweet deal as J.M. Smucker acquires it for $5.6 billion.

Sweet Deal: J.M. Smucker Buys Hostess Brands for $5.6 Billion

In a sugary twist of fate, Hostess Brands, the iconic maker of Twinkies and other mouthwatering treats, is changing hands. J.M. Smucker, known for its jelly and brands like Jif peanut butter and Folgers coffee, has sealed the deal for a whopping $5.6 billion. Here's the scoop:

Sweet Beginnings

  • Hostess, the creator of Twinkies since 1930, has had ups and downs.
  • It faced bankruptcy not once but twice, with Twinkies vanishing from shelves for a while.

Battle for the Treats

J.M. Smucker wasn't the only player in the game; competitors included PepsiCo, Mondelez International (the Oreo maker), and General Mills (the Cheerios maker). Despite the competition, J.M. Smucker went on to win the bid.

Hostess: Rise, Fall, and Resurgence

  • In 2004, Hostess filed for bankruptcy, blaming the nation's low-carb diet craze.
  • It bounced back under private-equity ownership but filed for Chapter 11 in 2012, citing union contracts as a major issue.
  • The company went through restructuring, with its snacking cakes business selling for $410 million.
  • In 2016, Hostess returned to the public market as TWNK.
  • Recent years saw Hostess's stock price more than double, thanks to rising snack demand and prices. Although sales dipped a bit recently, this attracted potential buyers.

America's Snacking Resurgence

Nearly half of U.S. consumers now indulge in three or more snacks a day, marking an 8% increase over the past two years. Researchers credit the pandemic with this jump in snacking habits.

The trend is reshaping the food industry and has sent U.S. snack sales soaring to a staggering $181 billion last year, an 11% rise from the previous year, according to Circana Group, a renowned market research firm.

J.M. Smucker Betting Big

J.M. Smucker, led by CEO Mark Smucker, lauds Hostess for its "strong convenience store distribution and leading innovation pipeline." With this acquisition, the peanut butter and jelly giant expanded its snacking empire at a seemingly perfect time.

Sources: NPR | WSJ

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