ST. LOUIS — Post Holdings, Inc. said it plans to explore strategic alternatives for its private brands businesses, which produce nut butter, dried fruit and nut, pasta and granola products for retailers, distributors and manufacturers. The company also announced it expects to close its acquisition of Bob Evans Farms, Inc. on Jan. 12.
Post plans to combine its private businesses under one segment led by Jim Dwyer, current president and chief executive officer of Post’s Michael Foods Group. The company said it is considering an initial public offering, a placement of private equity, a sale of the businesses or a strategic combination.
|Rob Vitale, president and c.e.o. of Post Holdings
“We believe Jim Dwyer’s leadership will drive value creation in our strategic private brands businesses,” said Rob Vitale, president and c.e.o. of Post Holdings. “We further believe the best structure to support Jim and his team is likely outside of Post’s full ownership, and we will aggressively explore creative alternatives involving direct capital and/or strategic partnerships.”
Post expects to report the private brands businesses, including Golden Boy, Dakota Growers and Attune Foods, as one segment beginning in the second quarter of fiscal year 2018. In the fiscal year ended Sept. 30, 2017, these businesses combined had sales of $791.2 million, net earnings of $43.4 million and adjusted EBITDA of $106.9 million.
“Private brands will continue to be a strong growth driver across all trade channels and customers,” Mr. Dwyer said. “It’s exciting to create a business singularly focused on partnering with customers to profitably grow our respective businesses.”
The company has not established a timetable for the exploration process and said there can be no assurance that the process will result in a transaction or other action by Post.Additionally, stockholders of Bob Evans on Jan. 9 approved the acquisition by Post, satisfying one of the closing conditions of the transaction. Upon close of the transaction, Post plans to form a refrigerated retail business unit, led by Mike Townsley, current c.e.o. of Bob Evans, and a food service business unit, led by Mark Westphal, current chief financial officer of Post's Michael Foods Group.