He bought pieces of Hostess' former company in bankruptcy court, installed himself as CEO and chairman and started a rebuild about which many had doubts. Seven years later, C. Dean Metropoulos must feel his job there is done and he announced today (Oct. 15) his exit and the appointment of a new but familiar chairman.
“Transforming Hostess into one of the premier branded CPG companies in the industry, initially as CEO and recently as chairman, has been very successful,” said Metropoulos. “Over the past two years, the management team has built a strong foundation and is positioned for continued industry leading revenue growth at industry leading margins."
He will resign from the company’s board of directors at the end of 2020 "in order to pursue other commitments." Immediately appointed chairman was Jerry Kaminski, who has been on the Hostess board since November 2016 and remains Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer at Land O’Lakes Inc. Andy Callahan remains Hostess' President and Chief Executive Officer.
Hostess is now a public company again (since late 2016) and, as of its 2019 financial report, had sales of $908 million and a $78 million profit. Its predecessor, Interstate Bakeries, once was a $3 billion company but carried heavy debt and wage and pension obligations and filed for bankruptcy twice, first in 2004 and again in 2012. The second time, the company was liquidated, with various assets and brands going at auction to the new Hostess, under Metropoulos, as well as to Flowers Foods, United States Bakery, McKee Foods and Grupo Bimbo.
This is what Metropoulos does. Born in Greece, he and his investment firms have bought, rebuilt and resold Pinnacle Foods, Ghirardelli Chocolate Co., International Home Foods, Pabst Brewing Co., Morningstar Group and Bumble Bee Tuna, among others.