November 16, 2012 10:00 AM, EST
Hostess Going Out of Business
Company Reportedly Seeking Buyers of Its Well-Known Brands

Hostess Brands, the maker of Twinkies, HoHos and Wonder Bread, said it is going out of business after failing to get wage and benefit cuts from thousands of its striking bakery workers, news services reported Friday.

The company, which has about $2.5 billion in annual sales from its well-known consumer brands, said it suspended operations at all of its 33 U.S. bakeries as it moves to begin liquidating assets, Reuters reported.

Its closure would mean the loss of about 18,500 jobs, and Hostess is seeking buyers for its roster of about 30 brands, which include Dolly Madison, Drake’s and Nature’s Pride snacks, The Associated Press reported.

A strike by the Bakery, Confectionery, Tobacco Workers and Grain Millers International Union that began last week crippled its ability to produce and deliver products at some facilities, Hostess said, according to Reuters.

Hostess had reached a contract agreement with the Teamsters union, the largest unionized part of its workforce, after the Teamsters had urged the bakery union this week to hold a secret ballot on whether to continue striking, AP reported.

Hostess, which filed for bankruptcy in January less than three years after completing an earlier restructuring, has 565 distribution centers and 570 bakery outlet stores in addition to its 33 bakeries, Reuters reported.

Hostess Brands, Irving, Texas, ranks No. 32 on Transport Topics’ Top 100 Private Carriers list, with about 900 tractors, 6,700 trucks and vans and 1,800 trailers.