Private equity firm Sun Capital Partners wants to buy bankrupt bakery Hostess Brands Inc., Fortune has learned.
The proposal would be to operate Hostess as a going concern, including reopening the shuttered factories and continuing union representation of Hostess workers.
Hostess Brands - the maker of such iconic baked goods as Twinkies, Devil Dogs and Wonder Bread - announced Friday that it is asking a federal bankruptcy court for permission to close its operations, blaming a strike by bakers protesting a new contract imposed on them.
The closing will result in Hostess' nearly 18,500 workers losing their jobs as the company shuts 33 bakeries and 565 distribution centers nationwide, as well as 570 outlet stores. The Bakery, Confectionery, Tobacco Workers and Grain Millers International Union represents around 5,000 Hostess employees.
Is this the end for Twinkies?
Hostess Brands said Wednesday that it will go into liquidation unless bakers striking in protest against a new contract imposed in bankruptcy court return to work by the end of the day Thursday.
"We simply do not have the financial resources to survive an ongoing national strike," Hostess CEO Greg Rayburn said in a statement.
The liquidation would result in Hostess' nearly 18,000 workers losing their jobs. The bakers' union represents around 5,000.
Two years ago, I met Square CEO Jack Dorsey at Third Rail, one of his favorite coffee shops in downtown New York. He held up a small plastic square and told me that the future of payments was in this tiny device.
The entire industry was about to change, he said.
Dorsey was in the middle of a major change himself. Recently ousted from Twitter, the company he cofounded, he rebounded by shifting his famously intense focus to a new pain point: the way we pay.
In several Afghan provinces the fight to curb the growing of opium poppies seems to be a losing battle.
In 2011 a United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime survey said opium poppy cultivation rose by 7% overall from the prior year. Opium poppy has been one of the main sources of funding for the Taliban especially since the U.S. invasion of Afghanistan in 2001. Poppy cultivation is expected to grow partly because the opium poppy's prices are rising and because farmers are having a hard time deriving as much profit from alternative crops.
But one Afghan province is showing real progress in doing just that. The alternative crop is the world's most expensive spice, saffron.
Jane Velez-Mitchell is the author of 'iWant: My Journey from Addiction and Overconsumption to a Simpler, Honest Life' and 'Secrets Can Be Murder: The Killer Next Door' as well as 'Addict Nation: An Intervention for America'. She hosts the Jane Velez-Mitchell show nightly on HLN at 7p ET.
McDonald's says it’s phasing out pig gestation crates. When I heard that news, I almost started crying. I was so grateful because I have witnessed the horror. One look at a pig gestation crate and you will know exactly what I mean.
A breeding sow spends most of her life in a tiny cage. It’s usually about seven feet long and two feet wide. She cannot turn around. She cannot scratch herself. She must urinate and defecate where she stands. Simply put, I believe she is tortured, day in and day out.
Starbucks is getting into the bread business.
The Seattle-based coffee chain announced plans Monday to buy San Francisco-based Bay Bread and its La Boulange bakery brand for $100 million.
"This is an investment in our core business," said Howard Schultz, Starbucks chief executive, in a conference call with financial analysts. "After more than 40 years, we will be able to say that we are bakers too."
Schultz said one-third of Starbucks transactions include the purchase of a food item. Food now accounts for $1.5 billion in sales at U.S. company-operated Starbucks stores and has grown sharply in recent years, he added.
Starbucks will create a "new methodology" to produce fresh baked items, Schultz said without elaborating.
Read - Starbucks: 'We are bakers too'
The maker of Twinkies and Wonder Bread heads to court Tuesday to try to throw out its union contracts, in a battle that leaves the iconic baker's future very much in doubt.
Hostess Brands, which makes Ding Dongs and a variety of other sweet treats, is asking the bankruptcy court in White Plains, N.Y. to tear up labor agreements, which would, among other things, allow Hostess to change how it funds union pensions. The hearing is expected to last two days.
The International Brotherhood of Teamsters and the Bakery, Confectionery, Tobacco Workers, together represent more than three-quarters of the 18,500 workers at the company.
McDonald's said it will get its pork suppliers to phase out the use of immobilizing cages for pregnant pigs, a move that was applauded by the Humane Society of the United States, but not the pork industry.
"McDonald's believes gestation stalls are not a sustainable production system for the future," said the fast food chain in a press release. "There are alternatives that we think are better for the welfare of sows."
Animal activists oppose the use of gestation stalls, which are cages that keep individual sows in close confines while they're pregnant.
"Confining pigs in gestation crates is arguably the cruelest practice in factory farming," said Josh Balk, spokesman for the Humane Society of the U.S. "These are iron maidens that are barely larger than the pigs' own bodies."