It is expected that Utz Brands will trade under the ticker symbol 'UTZ' on the New York Stock Exchange.
The merger values the family-owned US snack producer at approximately $1.56bn, or 11.6 times its estimated 2021 Pro Forma Adjusted EBITDA of $134m. The deal gives the Rice family the opportunity to cash out $60m of their ownership stake while maintaining control of the potato chip and pretzel maker, founded by Bill and Salie Utz in 1921.
“As we approach our 100-year anniversary, we are excited to take this important step forward to position Utz for its next century of growth,” said Utz chief executive Dylan Lissette, who married into the Rice family.
“This transaction enables Utz to continue its long-term growth plans and provides greater access to capital to fund organic and inorganic growth.”
Unlock meaningful value
The Hanover-based company tipped $768m in revenue last year and ranked fourth in market share for US salty snacks behind PepsiCo, Campbell Soup and Kellogg. It produces around five million pounds of snacks in its 14 factories every week, selling product in more than 75,000 retail outlets nationwide. Utz’s brands include Utz, Zapp’s, Golden Flake, Good Health, Boulder Canyon, Hawaiian Brand, Bachman, Jax, Wachusett, Kitchen Cooked, Snyder of Berlin, and Tim’s Cascade, among others.
Collier Creek cofounder Roger Deromedi – previously chairman of Pinnacle Foods and prior to that, CEO of Kraft Foods – will become chairman of Utz Brands. Dylan Lissette will remain as CEO, along with the existing management team.
“We look forward to working closely with Utz’s management to unlock meaningful value for all stakeholders by investing in innovation and marketing to delight consumers, expanding distribution into new retailers and geographies, broadening the Utz product offering, driving operational efficiencies, and capitalising on strategic acquisition opportunities that further enhance Utz’s unique platform and brand portfolio,” said Jason Giordano, cofounder of Collier Creek.
The transaction – unanimously approved by the board of directors of Collier Creek, as well as the board of managers of Utz – is expected to close in the third quarter of 2020, subject to customary closing conditions.