Georgia-based company signs agreement to buy Hostess bread brands

By WEEK Producer

January 14, 2013 Updated Jan 14, 2013 at 9:55 PM CDT

THOMASVILLE, Ga. -- NBC Chicago is reporting that a Georgia-based company has signed an agreement to buy several of Hostess' brands.

Flowers Foods, Inc, which makes Nature’s Own line of breads along with the Tastykake line of cupcakes and sweets, has expressed interest in several Hostess products.

On Friday, Flowers said that it had signed purchasing agreements to take on buy Wonder, Nature’s Pride, Merita, Home Pride and Butternut bread brands from Hostess for $360 million. The company also plans to buy the ailing bakery’s Beefsteak Bread for an additional $30 million.

However, Flowers has not expressed interest in the snack cake portion of the company, but that doesn't mean there is no interest.

The New York Times has reported that the divisions that make the snacks have drawn attention from “scores” of bidders.

Hostess, which has faced financial difficulty for years, said in November it planned to wind down its operations after a bankruptcy court gave approval to a plan to shut 33 bakeries, 565 distribution centers, approximately 5,500 delivery routes and 570 bakery outlet stores.

The court also approved the elimination of 18,500 jobs.