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Hostess CEO Says Sale to Grupo Bimbo a ‘Misconception’

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Nov. 19 (Bloomberg) -- Hostess Brands Inc. Chief Executive Officer Gregory Rayburn said Grupo Bimbo SAB won’t be a potential buyer for the bankrupt baker of Twinkies and Wonder Bread.

“One misconception in the market is that Bimbo would be a buyer and bakery leadership told us in several plants that Bimbo would come in and buy, which is absurd,” Rayburn said today in an interview with Bloomberg Television.

Rayburn cited Bimbo’s agreement with the U.S. Justice Department to sell some Sara Lee brands in order to complete its acquisition of Sara Lee’s North American bakery business.

“Due to antitrust, it would never happen,” Rayburn said.

Hostess, the 82-year-old maker of Hostess CupCakes, Ding Dongs and Ho Hos, said Nov. 16 it would fire more than 18,000 employees and go out of business after a weeklong strike by its bakers’ union.

Hostess will draw strategic buyers and private-equity investors for its brands, Rayburn said, without naming potential bidders. The company is “more attractive” to buyers without the unions, he said.

“There will be a number of people interested,” he said.

To contact the reporters on this story: Lauren Coleman-Lochner in New York at llochner@bloomberg.net; Deirdre Bolton in New York at dbolton@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Robin Ajello at rajello@bloomberg.net

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