While Flowers Foods hasn't yet publicly stated any intent to buy any part of Hostess, the Thomasville, Ga.-based company, which is considered the nation’s second-largest baker in sales behind Grupo Bimbo, announced in November that it had renegotiated lending terms that could allow it to access extra cash, which might mean that it could be gearing up for a bid.

Meanwhile, Hostess reportedly has received a “flood of inquiries” from potential buyers, though it hasn’t commented on specifics.

Flowers Foods didn’t immediately respond to inquiries, but released a statement about its new lending terms: "This amendment to our credit facility positions us to take advantage of an assortment of opportunities as we work to achieve our expansion goals," says Flowers Foods chief financial officer R. Steve Kinsey in the statement.

Hostess is expected to sell off assets for its 30 brands, 36 plants and other assets, piece by piece, and announcements will emerge as the deals go through. The company won interim approval to proceed with its liquidation plan Nov. 21.

Source: www.online.wsj, huffingtonpost.com