Utz set for Monday debut on New York Stock Exchange

A neon Utz Potato Chips sign sits above one of the company’s Hanover factories. PHOTO/ JOHN LLOYD

Utz Quality Foods completed its merger with special purpose acquisition firm Collier Creek Holdings on Friday and will make its debut on the New York Stock Exchange Monday morning.

Hanover, York County-based Utz announced in June that it would be changing its name to Utz Brands, Inc. and going public with an anticipated initial enterprise value of $1.56 billion upon closing its merger with Collier Creek.

A final vote to close on the merger was approved and finalized on Friday and the new company formed out of the merger will begin trading next week with the ticker UTZ, Utz Brands wrote in a press release.

This year marks the 99th anniversary of the local snack food manufacturer, which reported pro forma net sales of $242 million in the second quarter of 2020, up from $218 million in the same quarter last year.

Collier Creek co-founder Roger Deromedi, a former Chairman of Pinnacle Foods and CEO of Kraft Foods, will become Chairman of Utz Brands.

Dylan Lisette, Utz’s CEO since 2013, will continue to lead the business at its Hanover headquarters.

Lisette said that Utz’s new partnership with Collier Creek allows Utz Brands to further accelerate its growth as a public company and become the fastest-growing, pure-play branded snack company of its scale.

“Leveraging our proven track record of profitable growth and the Collier Creek team’s expertise in driving value creation in food platform companies, we have multiple ways to win in the growing salty snack category,” he said. “Our growth strategy is focused on driving organic sales growth through increased marketing, new products and geographic expansion; executing significant margin enhancement opportunities; reinvesting productivity gains into the business to unlock topline growth; and continuing to build the Utz platform with strategic acquisitions.”

The new Utz Brands is set to receive an initial investment of $35 million through Collier, along with any additional funds acquired from stock sales.

Collier also currently holds approximately $453 million in its trust account, which will be used to pay cash consideration to Utz’s owners, cover transaction expenses and reduce the company’s debts.

Late last year, Utz announced that it acquired seven new snacking brands to add to its portfolio after buying the brands from Chicago-based Conagra Brands.
Utz currently operates 14 manufacturing facilities nationwide.

Ioannis Pashakis
Ioannis Pashakis covers health care, the gig economy, cannabis and technology. Email him at ipashakis@bridgetowermedia.com.

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