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Dean Foods finds buyer for ‘substantial portion’ of business operations amid Chapter 11 proceedings

Dean Foods Co. announced Tuesday that Dairy Farmers of America is the winning bidder for a substantial portion of the company’s business operations, according to a news release.

As part of its Chapter 11 bankruptcy process, Dallas-based Dean Foods (NYSE: DF) had a comprehensive sale process and auction in which DFA will acquire 44 of Dean’s fluid and frozen assets for $433 million in cash.

The deal, which is subject to final approval by the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of Texas, means DFA will acquire all assets, rights, interests and properties for those facilities.

As part of the court-supervised sale process, Dean also designated:

  • Prairie Farms Dairy eight additional facilities, two distribution branches and other assets for $75 million
  • Mana Saves McArthur, LLC a facility in Miami
  • Producers Dairy Foods a facility in Reno
  • Harmoni, Inc. as the winning bidder for the Uncle Matt’s business.

“We ran a competitive auction process and are pleased to have reached these agreements, which we believe represent the best path forward for our stakeholders,” Eric Beringause, president and CEO of Dean Foods, said in a release. “Dean Foods has strong and long-standing relationships with DFA and Prairie Farms Dairy. We are pleased that through these transactions, substantially all of our processing assets will continue to operate as dairies and will be owned by our dairy farmer partners.”

A hearing to seek required court approvals is scheduled for April 3. If approved, the transactions are expected to close at the end of April.

Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP and Norton Rose Fulbright are legal advisors to Dean Foods, while Evercore is its investment banker and Alvarez & Marsal is its financial advisor, according to the release.

Source: Biz Journal

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