Utz Brands, Inc. (NYSE: UTZ) (“Utz” or the “Company”) has announced that its subsidiary Utz Quality Foods, LLC has entered into a definitive agreement with Conagra Brands, Inc. (NYSE: CAG) to acquire certain assets of the H.K. Anderson business, a brand of peanut butter-filled pretzels. The transaction, with a purchase price of less than $10 million which will be funded from current cash-on-hand, enables Utz to jump-start its entry into the growing filled pretzel segment, leveraging the synergies of its salty snack platform. The acquisition includes intellectual property specific to the H.K. Anderson brand and does not include employees, facilities or equipment. The transaction is expected to close in November 2020, subject to customary closing conditions.
“The approximate $100 million filled segment of pretzels is ripe for innovation and growth,” said Dylan Lissette, chief executive officer of Utz Brands, Inc. “As we look to increase our share in the rapidly expanding salty snack category through new products and geographic growth, this type of acquisition is tailor made for the synergies and growth opportunity afforded by our platform.”
While traditional versions of pretzels continue to enjoy popularity, increased consumer snacking presents opportunities to accelerate momentum in the pretzel category through innovation. According to IRI, dollar sales of pretzels increased 10 percent to $1.4 billion, based on data for the 52 weeks ending September 6, 2020, an increase of more than $120 million versus a year ago.