The Supply Side: Wal-Mart supplier community news briefs

• Post Foods acquires Attune Foods
Post a subsidiary of Post Holdings, has acquired San Francisco-based Attune Foods, a health field company. Founded in 2006, Attune Foods makes Uncle Sam high fiber cereals, Erewhon gluten-free cereals, Erewhon organic graham crackers and Attune chocolate probiotic bars.

Financial terms were not disclosed.

“Attune Foods is strengthening our commitment to healthy living, whole grains, the gluten-free community and the Non-GMO Project with a new owner, Post Foods,” Attune noted on its website.

“While we’ll continue to operate independently with the same team in San Francisco, we wanted to be transparent about our newest supporters. Everything else stays the same: our people, products, recipes, ingredients and trusted certifications.

“In fact, our independent spirit and deep-rooted commitment to the natural foods industry is what attracted Post.”

• ConAgra Foods appoints Lamb Weston leader
Greg Schlafer has been named president of ConAgra Foods’ Lamb Weston business unit, effective Feb. 25. He will step into a position that has been the responsibility of Paul Maass, president of Commercial Foods for ConAgra, for more than a year.

“Greg brings a customer-focused approach, 20-plus years of experience in the food industry, and a proven track record of success in the commercial/business-to-business space,” Maass said. “I’m confident his leadership will add tremendous value for our customers, our suppliers, and our team as we continue maximizing the long-term potential of this important part of ConAgra Foods’ business.”

Schlafer was most recently vice-president of the Bakeries & Foodservice division for General Mills Inc.

ConAgra is a major supplier to Wal-Mart with local offices in Northwest Arkansas.

• Flowers wins bids on Hostess breads
Flowers Foods last week signed agreements to acquire certain Hostess bread brands One agreement includes the brands of Wonder, Nature’s Pride, Merita, Home Pride and Butternut breads along with 20 bakeries and approximately 38 depots for a total purchase price of $360 million.

Flower said it will also pay $30 million for the Beefsteak brand.

The transactions are subject to a court-approved bankruptcy process being initiated by Hostess. If Flowers' bids are approved by the bankruptcy court, they would then be subject to a competitive auction process to be held in several weeks.

The company would expect to close the transactions shortly following court approval if it is selected as the winning bidder. The transactions also are subject to regulatory clearance.

"This agreement is consistent with Flowers Foods' long-term growth objectives to reach significantly more of the U.S. population with its fresh breads, buns, and rolls," said George E. Deese, chairman and CEO of Flowers Foods. "We believe these assets would enhance our ability, over time, to provide more U.S. consumers with quality baked foods at a good value through existing and new retail and foodservice customers."

Flowers Foods plans to finance the transactions through a mix of available cash on hand and debt.

• Singer to retire as CEO of Snyder’s-Lance
David V. Singer, CEO of Snyder’s-Lance Inc., has announced he will retire after the company’s annual stockholders meeting on May 3.

Carl Lee Jr., who has been president and chief operating officer since December 2010 and was also CEO. of Snyder’s of Hanover for five years, will take over the head leadership role.

“Dave has accomplished much in his tenure at Snyder’s-Lance, and we appreciate greatly the strong foundation that has been built under his leadership,” said Bill J. Prezzano, lead independent director. “His dedication and industry experience have been instrumental in the company’s growth into the snack industry leader it is today, and we look forward to building on that success.”

• National Retail Federal elects 2013 -2014 board
The National Retail Federation has elected Saks chairman and CEO Stephen I. Sadove to chairman of the NRF board of directors and chairman of its executive committee. Sadove succeeds Terry J. Lundgren, who is chairman, president and CEO of Macy’s.

The Container Store chairman and CEO Kip Tindell was elected first vice chairman of the board, treasurer and chairman of the finance committee, and HSNi CEO Mindy Grossman was elected second vice chair of the board and secretary.

The three executives join NRF president and CEO Matthew Shay to form NRF’s leadership team. Each board officer will serve a two-year term.

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“Representing the breadth and diversity of the retail industry from small business owners to global brands, the board will help shape NRF’s strategic objectives and advocacy agenda,” said Shay.

Other newly elected retail board members included Beth Aberg, president, Random Harvest Inc.; Sasha Bopp, CEO, Crate and Barrel; Brendan Hoffman, president and CEO, Bon-Ton Stores Inc.; and Ravi Saligram, president and CEO, OfficeMax.

State retail association executives elected as ex officio board members included Michelle Ahlmer, executive director, Arizona Retailers Association and Roland Myers, president and CEO, Tennessee Retail Association.

Associate Member Advisory Council representatives re-elected to the board included Karen Lowe, general manager, Global Retail Industry, IBM Corporation; Ramón B. Martin, president, Merchant Services Americas, American Express Company; and Alison Paul, principal, Deloitte & Touche LLP.

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