September 16, 1999 |
H.J. Heinz Co. refused comment and Bestfoods denied rumors that the two companies were in merger talks, but investors bid up their shares on the prospect of a takeover boosting the value of the food companies' stocks. Englewood Cliffs, N.J.-based Bestfoods issued a statement saying "no significant acquisition or combination discussions are in progress" after a Wall Street Journal report that the two companies had discussed a merger.
April 24, 1999 |
H.J. Heinz Co. agreed to a licensing agreement it expects will let it manufacture and test sales this year of branded products under Boston Chicken Inc.'s trademarks. Heinz would pay the parent of the struggling Boston Market restaurant chain undisclosed royalty fees based on sales of products to retailers under the agreement, which is subject to approval of an Arizona Bankruptcy Court. Boston Chicken said it expects the court to consider approval of the agreement May 25.
November 11, 1998 |
H.J. Heinz Co. said it will combine its Ore-Ida Foods and Weight Watchers frozen food units into a new company, Heinz Frozen Food Co., resulting in about 400 job cuts and a $150-million pretax charge. The world's largest catsup maker said it will close a factory in Pennsylvania, cut production at a plant in Idaho and exit the pocket-sandwich business as part of the consolidation. Heinz named Neil Harrison president and chief executive of the new company, which will be based in Pittsburgh.
September 9, 1998 |
H.J. Heinz Co. reported better-than expected earnings for the fiscal first quarter and said it agreed to sell its Canadian-based bakery products unit to Pillsbury Co., a unit of Diageo--the British food, beverage and restaurant conglomerate--for $178 million in cash. Heinz's profit rose 13% in the quarter to $223.3 million, or 60 cents a share, excluding charges.
June 17, 1998 |
H.J. Heinz Co. said its fiscal fourth-quarter profit rose 62% as cost cuts more than offset revenue lost in divestitures and currency translations. The packaged-foods company also said it agreed to buy the College Inn line of canned broth from Nabisco Holdings Corp. and Vidalia O's frozen onion rings brand from Vidalia Frozen Foods Inc., both under undisclosed terms. Pittsburgh-based Heinz said it earned $196.2 million, or 53 cents a diluted share, in the period ended April 29, up from $121.
May 1, 1998 |
William Johnson started his first day on the job as chief executive of H.J. Heinz Co. by promoting four executives to report directly to him in an effort to improve communications as the food company undergoes a sweeping reorganization. Johnson, 49, who was president and chief operating officer, took over as CEO from Anthony O'Reilly, 61, who will remain nonexecutive chairman through 2000, in a move announced in December.
October 1, 1997 |
H.J. Heinz Co.'s Weight Watchers International Inc. settled long-standing federal deceptive advertising charges by agreeing to permanently trim the diet company's claims about the success of its programs. The settlement, which requires that certain disclosures accompany weight-loss claims, formalizes a policy that Weight Watchers says it has followed since shortly after the Federal Trade Commission filed suit in 1993. The settlement marks the culmination of an FTC crackdown on U.S.
June 12, 1996
In celebration of the company's 100th anniversary, Heinz Ketchup, along with the H.J. Heinz Co. Foundation, will donate $450,000 over three years to the National Endowment for the Arts to help save children's arts programs--the largest contribution to the NEA since the 1996 budget cut that reduced federal funding to the NEA by 39%. The Heinz centennial celebration, to kick off with a ceremony planned for Thursday at Washington, D.C.'