(Adds details, shares)
Dec 3 Sandell Asset Management Corp urged Bob
Evans Farms Inc to sell its packaged foods business,
which the activist investor said could fetch more than $950
Cereal maker Post Holdings Inc has expressed
interest in the packaged foods business, Sandell said in a
letter sent to the Bob Evans board.
Bob Evans shares were up 4 percent at $41.09 in morning
trading on Thursday.
"We have maintained an active dialogue with the Sandell
Group about our business," Bob Evans spokesman Scott Taggart
said in an email.
"Our board is focused on ways to improve performance and
enhance shareholder value and will continue to review ways to
accomplish these goals".
The Wall Street Journal first reported that Sandell was
again asking Bob Evans to sell the foods business.
"Post had expressed an interest in pursuing a transaction
with Bob Evans involving its packaged foods business ... Post
has a continuing, strong interest in pursuing a transaction,"
Sandell Asset CEO Thomas Sandell said in the letter dated
Post Holdings also has the ability to structure a deal that
could reduce or eliminate the tax consequences to Bob Evans,
according to the letter.
Post Holdings was not immediately available for comment.
Sandell has been involved in a proxy fight with Bob Evans
since 2013, and has been asking the company to separate its
food-products business, BEF Foods, and its Bob Evans Restaurants
The activist investor had also asked the company to pursue
deals with investment firms interested in the real estate assets
owned by the restaurant business.
Bob Evans said in March it was not currently looking at
selling or spinning off the food-products business and was
evaluating strategic options for all or a portion of its
(Reporting by Nayan Das and Sruthi Ramakrishnan in Bengaluru;
Additional reporting by Natalie Grover; Editing by Shounak