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    Atlantic Baking Group Set to Grow Private Label Business with Aquisitions

    OAKBROOK, Ill. - Atlantic Baking Group Inc. (ABG) today announced two pending acquisitions that will propel the company toward its goal of becoming the industry-leading supplier of private label cookies and crackers.

    OAKBROOK, Ill. - Atlantic Baking Group Inc. (ABG) today announced two pending acquisitions that will propel the company toward its goal of becoming the industry-leading supplier of private label cookies and crackers. ABG has signed a definitive agreement to acquire the Bake-Line Products (Bake-Line) private label business from Kellogg Company, and has agreed to acquire four baking facilities from Consolidated Biscuit Company (CBC).

    The purchase prices of both transactions were not disclosed. The transactions are expected to close within 30 to 60 days.

    Bake-Line Products, a unit of Keebler Foods Company, was part of Kellogg's acquisition of Keebler in March 2001. ABG's purchase of the Bake-Line private label business includes Keebler's Marietta, Okla., bakery as its primary manufacturing facility. Not included in the Bake-Line transaction is the Des Plaines, Ill., bakery, which will remain with Keebler.

    The CBC transaction includes bakeries in Birmingham, Ala.; North Little Rock, Ark.; and two bakeries in South Beloit, Ill. Three of the four facilities are cookie bakeries that produce products primarily for the private label and regional value brand business. The fourth facility is a baked snack bakery that primarily produces organic baked snacks. Atlantic Baking Group operates a cracker manufacturing facility in Pittsburgh.

    "With the combination of Bake-Line, the Marietta bakery, the CBC facilities, and the Pittsburgh cracker bakery, ABG will become the number-one supplier in the private label cookie category and number-two overall in the private label biscuit industry," said David Shanholtz, ABG's president and CEO. "The relocation of many Bake-Line products from Keebler facilities into the newly formed ABG manufacturing network will increase production at all five of the acquired facilities, as well as our Pittsburgh bakery. We have every intention of operating all of the bakeries that we are in the process of acquiring, and we are very excited about the positive impact these actions will have upon our employees."

    Atlantic Baking Group, now headquartered in Oakbrook, Ill., was formed in 1999 with the reopening of a closed Nabisco cracker facility in Pittsburgh.

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