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Snacks & Candy

Snack-Maker Utz Acquires Inventure Foods

Deal combines better-for-you reputation with strong foothold in traditional snacks

HANOVER, Pa. -- A $165 million agreement combining Utz Quality Foods and Inventure Foods, announced in late October, links two firms that offer diversified synergy: Inventure Foods, a company that is honing a specialty, better-for-you food reputation, and Utz, a manufacturer with a strong foothold in traditional snacks, such as potato chips, pretzels, cheese snacks, corn chips, tortillas, popcorn and more.

The agreement is expected to close by the end of the fourth quarter. Hanover, Pa.-based Utz, the largest privately held and family-managed branded salty-snack manufacturer and marketer in the United States, agreed to acquire all of Inventure’s outstanding shares of common stock in an all-cash transaction.

The merger is an opportunity to tap into a “strong heritage of innovation in healthy and indulgent snacking,” said Utz CEO Dylan Lissette, citing Inventure’s solid geographic footprint, customer relationships and distribution strengths as keys to the deal.

Terry McDaniel, CEO of Phoenix-based Inventure, said the merger followed sustained “diligent analysis and strategic deliberations” by Inventure’s board as far back as the summer of 2016. The deal is expected to deliver immediate and certain cash value to stockholders and new opportunities for its snack brands.

Utz operates 10 facilities, located in Pennsylvania, Colorado, Louisiana, Massachusetts and Alabama. With manufacturing facilities in Arizona and Indiana, Inventure markets specialty better-for-you food brands under an umbrella that includes Boulder Canyon Foods, TGI Fridays, Nathan's Famous, Vidalia Brands, Poore Brothers and more.

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