Dean Foods today announced that, following a comprehensive sale process and a competitive auction as part of its Chapter 11 process, Dairy Farmers of America has been named the winning bidder to purchase a large portion of Dean Foods’ assets.
Within the agreement, which is subject to final approval by the Bankruptcy Court, DFA will acquire the assets, rights, interests, and properties relating to 44 of Dean Foods fluid and frozen facilities for $433 million.
“After many months of uncertainty regarding the future of Dean Foods, we are pleased to have been named the accepted bidder for a large portion of Dean’s assets,” says Monica Massey, DFA senior vice president and chief of staff. “Throughout this process, our main focus has always been, and continues to be, on maintaining milk markets and limiting disruption to the industry. The bid is contingent upon approval by the Bankruptcy Court and Department of Justice, as well as finalization of collective bargaining agreements with multiple unions. If approved, the purchase of these assets will be critical to our mission of delivering value to our family farm-owners, preserve nearly 12,000 jobs and ensure fresh dairy is available to consumers across the country.”
Prairie Farms Dairy won the bid for 8 additional facilities and two distribution brances in addition to other assets for $75 million cash. Mana Saves McArthur, LLC, and Producers Dairy Foods won the bids for facilities located in Miami, Fla. and Reno, Nev., respectively. Additionally, Harmoni, Inc. has been designated 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,” said Eric Beringause, president and CEO of Dean Foods. “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 with the resources, experience and industry expertise to continue to succeed in the current market environment. We are committed to completing these transactions as quickly as possible, and to ensuring a smooth transition for our customers.”
On Friday, April 3, a sale hearing is scheduled with the U.S. Bankruptcy Court to approve or deny the bids.