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    Lance Wins Bid for Tom's Foods

    Snack maker to pay nearly $38 million for one-time competitor.

    Lance Inc. was named the successful bidder in a U.S. Bankruptcy Court-directed auction of the assets of Tom's Foods Inc. The purchase price is $37.9 million, plus the assumption of certain liabilities.

    Tom's Foods, based in Columbus, Ga., is a snack food manufacturer and distributor. The company's products include potato chips, nuts, sandwich crackers and other items that are distributed through a combination of independent distributors and company-owned direct-store delivery routes. Primary retail outlets for Tom's products are convenience stores and vending machines in the Southeast.

    The company's assets include five U.S. manufacturing facilities with 1,400 employees. Completion of the transaction is subject to approval by the U.S. Bankruptcy Court.

    "Tom's has a strong heritage and solid reputation in the snack food business, and we believe that this opportunity will make our company stronger," said David Singer, Lance's CEO. "The transaction developed quickly, and we are still developing our plans. In the near term, we intend to continue business as usual while we develop a plan to effectively meet the needs of our customers and consumers."

    Lance, based in Charlotte, N.C., makes and markets snack foods throughout most of the United States.

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