Corporate Profiles - 2021 - 102

COMPANY OVERVIEW
Post Holdings, Inc.
S
t. Louis-based Post Holdings, Inc.'s portfolio
expansion continued in 2021 with
a string of deals and the formation of a
special purpose acquisition company (SPAC).
Post in February announced it was seeking
$400 million in fundraising for its blank-check
company,
Post
initial
public
Holdings
Partnering
(PHPC). The size of the SPAC was trimmed to
$300 million in June when PHPC completed
its
Corp.
offering. Robert V. Vitale,
president and chief executive officer of Post,
serves as PHPC's chief investment officer. He
will leverage the SPAC to partner with companies
in the consumer packaged goods industry
that may benefit from his and other Post leaders'
experience.
Post expanded its reach in a range of categories
with a series of acquisitions, purchasing the
Peter Pan peanut butter brand and Egg Beater
liquid egg whites brand from Conagra Brands,
Inc. It also acquired Almark Foods, a maker of
hard-cooked and deviled egg products.
Other deals include the acquisition of the
Ronzoni dry pasta brand and a dry pasta
manufacturing facility from Riviana Foods,
a unit of Ebro Foods, for $95 million. Post
also was a lead investor in funding rounds
for better-for-you snack maker Peatos and
Acquisitions and investments bolster portfolio expansion strategy
plant-based meat maker Hungry Planet.
The company in June purchased the readyto-eat
cereal business of TreeHouse Foods, Inc.
for $85 million. The deal followed a proposed
$110 million acquisition that was challenged
by the Federal Trade Commission in 2019. It
included two facilities that feature a range of
production capabilities across batch and extruded
products, a research and development
facility as well as inventory valued at approximately
$30 million.
Mr. Vitale said Post will benefit from the private
label cereal business providing further differentiation
in the value segment, even as the
segment faced significant headwinds in 2021.
Increases in discretionary income from federal
stimulus programs produced a " trade-up " effect
that Mr. Vitale expects will be temporary.
Offering his prediction as to what might happen
in the RTE cereal category in the future,
Mr. Vitale told analysts in an Aug. 6 earnings
call the outlook is clouded by unusual consumer
behavior.
" If you look at data going back to 2019,
comparing it to 2021, I think at the category
level, you can get perhaps some false conclusions
because if you strip out value, which is
mostly us, the branded portfolios have done
very well, including ours, " he said.
He pointed to ongoing strength in Pebbles
cereal as an example. Sales of Pebbles products
grew 10% year-over-year in the third quarter
despite challenging comps.
Competing in the RTE cereal category will be
an " ongoing process of identifying and executing
against opportunity, " Mr. Vitale added. Many
companies have ramped up their indulgent offerings,
leading Post to reassess its strategy.
" If you go back to 2019, when we were very
early in the licensing of some more indulgent
flavors, we led with Oreo and then extended it
into some other similar brands, " Mr. Vitale said.
" That has led to a proliferation, if not saturation,
of that segment. When that happens, it
opens up other segments to identify opportunity
in. "
Still Post Holdings after the third quarter
lowered its earnings guidance for the fiscal year
to a range of $590 million to $610 million. CP
Chief executive officer -
Robert V. Vitale
Post Holdings, Inc.
net earnings
(fiscal years ended in September)
$457
$122
$0.80
Post Holdings, Inc. net sales
(fiscal years ended in September)
Post Holdings share price
per share
$6,257
$5,681
$5,699
$80
$90
$100
$110
$120
2018
2019
2020
2018
2019
2020
Oct. Dec.
2020
Feb.
2021
Apr.
June
Aug.
102 \ October 2021
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Corporate Profiles - 2021

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