Interstate Bakeries moving its HQ to Dallas

Interstate Bakeries moving its HQ to Dallas

Interstate Bakeries moving its HQ to Dallas

Interstate Bakeries Corp., one of Kansas City’s best-known companies, is moving its headquarters to Dallas now that it has emerged from 4 1/2 years in bankruptcy.

An Interstate spokesman said being based in Dallas will make it easier for the maker of iconic brands such as Wonder Bread and Hostess Twinkies to find the talent needed to move the company forward.

Interstate was founded in Kansas City nearly 80 years ago.

“A larger metropolitan area like Dallas will provide the company with a number of benefits, including access to a broader base of senior level executives with experience in the packaged consumer goods industry, which are needed for its success in rebuilding after emerging from Chapter 11,” said Interstate spokesman Lew Phelps.

The move involves only 20 positions, about 10 top executives and their support staff, Phelps said. That will leave close to 200 people at the current headquarters at 12 E. Armour Blvd.

“The company intends to continue to maintain a strong presence in Kansas City and looks forward to continuing to be a part of the Kansas City community, as it rebuilds and grows,” Phelps said.

There are about 200 employees at the corporate headquarters now. After the headquarters move in the next couple of months, some positions that were left vacant during the bankruptcy will be filled, returning the total close to 200, Phelps said.

The company has a total of roughly 600 employees in the area, including a plant in Lenexa and other operations.

The company exited bankruptcy Feb. 3. Before filing bankruptcy in 2004, the company was the largest wholesale baking company in the U.S. and one of Kansas City’s few Fortune 500 companies.

Many members of Interstate’s senior management, including Chief Executive Craig Jung, came to the company during its restructuring. Jung, who was hired in February 2007, previously was CEO of Panamerican Beverages, the third-largest Coca-Cola bottler in the world, covering seven Latin American countries.

Interstate is now controlled by New York investment firm Ripplewood Holdings, which made an investment of $130 million to take ownership of the company.

With the acquisition Ripplewood put two of its partners, Greg Murphy and John Cahill, on the Interstate board. Murphy had been president and chief executive of Kraft Food Bakery Cos. Cahill was previously chairman, president and chief executive of The Pepsi Bottling Group. Pepsico’s Frito Lay is based near Dallas.

Interstate was created in 1930, when Kansas City’s Schulze Baking Co., owned by Roy Nafziger, merged with a group of seven West Coast bakeries managed from Los Angeles.

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