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Old Nov 16, 2012, 09:28 AM   #1
thewitt
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Unions force Hostess into bankruptcy. 18000 to lose jobs. No more Twinkies

Driven in part by competition in the snack market and a union that refuses to recognize that higher costs of doing business are a reality today requiring concessions to continue employment, iconic Hostess will soon be no more.

http://usat.ly/ZGs6jI
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Old Nov 16, 2012, 09:32 AM   #2
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God forbid America eats a few less twinkies.
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Old Nov 16, 2012, 09:33 AM   #3
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Pro tip: Buy all the Hostess products you can. Sell them on eBay in a few weeks or months (or years). Profit.

As long as you sell them before whomever buys the brand (you know it'll be bought, as a whole or in pieces) starts making them again.

Then rebrand them as "Classic Hostess". Sell more. Profit.
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Old Nov 16, 2012, 09:44 AM   #4
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Driven in part by competition in the snack market and a union that refuses to recognize that higher costs of doing business are a reality today requiring concessions to continue employment, iconic Hostess will soon be no more.

http://usat.ly/ZGs6jI
Do you think you could ever post an article on here without sensationalizing the **** out of it?

I doubt it.

This company is garbage. They've gone through bankruptcy twice in the past few years already because nobody wants to buy their garbage unhealthy crap anymore. Maybe they should update their business model and start making something that will be profitable in 2012 instead of asking their employees (who are no doubt underpaid and are being taken advantage of already) to give up even more salary and pensions.

Screw that. Why should the employees have to pay because upper management made **** business decisions? I bet the CEO isn't taking cuts on his bonuses but they expect minimum-wage production workers who barely scrape by paycheck to paycheck to take cuts because the big wigs can't run a company.
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Old Nov 16, 2012, 09:47 AM   #5
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Someone will buy their brands and continue to produce their most popular products. Twinkies and Hoho's aside, they have some pretty strange products that i am guessing do not have a lot of sales volume.

In order to continue to be in business you have to have a business model that works and products that people want.
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Old Nov 16, 2012, 09:58 AM   #6
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Could have remodeled or branched out and produced something that wasn't utter disease. Instead they chose to size down and continue to peddle death during their first bankruptcy. Looks like nearly everything on their portfolio is designed to fill your arteries.

Lesson? Companies need to evolve to save jobs.
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Old Nov 16, 2012, 10:01 AM   #7
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I figured the article would mention something like this. There are a lot of snacks which are spun as health food while still being kind of bad, but did anyone really expect them to stay afloat selling things like twinkies in the current decade? Cultural trends in the US seem to be against such products, and I don't know how their international sales look.

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The company, founded in 1930, is fighting battles beyond labor costs, however. Competition is increasing in the snack market, while Americans are increasingly conscious about healthful eating. Hostess also makes Dolly Madison, Drake's and Nature's Pride snacks.
There's an anecdotal out of context quote regarding pensions as well. I don't interpret that as real information, yet if it is part of the issue, it's unsurprising. Factory line workers are not exactly high income earners, regardless of personal savings for retirement.

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As many as 45 people in the picket line chanted, "No pension, no deal," as they walked a tight circle in the growing cold and gathering darkness.

Potential buyers are also mentioned in the article. Once again it doesn't go into detail. While it doesn't sound like the union is cooperative here, this isn't enough to suggest Hostess whether has a long term future, regardless of negotiations. Looking up as many of their products as I can find in a quick google search, they make wonder bread, a selection of pies contained in wrappers, packaged donuts, twinkies, etc. There's very little diversity. They're primarily gas station/vending machine products. This does not seem like a company that is really diversified. They just seem like very dated products. I can't find anything new or interesting among them. If anyone is more familiar with the company, please contribute some detail here. They seem completely invested in a product category that has fallen out of style.

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The union business agent said he'd prefer to see Hostess sold.

"It's definitely got to be better than what this company's trying to implement. There are other bakeries out there looking to purchase some of these locations. These employees have the opportunity to go back in (under a new owner)."


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Driven in part by competition in the snack market ]
I would point out that much of their competition has gone in a completely different direction. There isn't any reference here that suggests it's simply a saturated (hehe) market.
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Old Nov 16, 2012, 10:02 AM   #8
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Outstanding thread title . It took all of 15 seconds to find that Hostess started having these issues in 2004.
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Old Nov 16, 2012, 10:04 AM   #9
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Lesson? Companies need to evolve to save jobs.
I don't want to derail the thread, but I'm curious. Is this the consensus here - that companies exist to employ people? Put another way - the success/failure of a company can be measured by its payroll?
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Old Nov 16, 2012, 10:14 AM   #10
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Driven in part by competition in the snack market and a union that refuses to recognize that higher costs of doing business are a reality today requiring concessions to continue employment, iconic Hostess will soon be no more.

http://usat.ly/ZGs6jI
oh it is the unions fault. Not the greed of the higher not wanting to take a pay cut from there massivley over inflated salaries. Starting with the CEO.
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Old Nov 16, 2012, 10:16 AM   #11
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I don't want to derail the thread, but I'm curious. Is this the consensus here - that companies exist to employ people? Put another way - the success/failure of a company can be measured by its payroll?
How do you get what you said, from what I said
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Old Nov 16, 2012, 10:18 AM   #12
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I don't want to derail the thread, but I'm curious. Is this the consensus here - that companies exist to employ people? Put another way - the success/failure of a company can be measured by its payroll?
Public "companies", that is, corporations, exist to protect owners from financial liability. "Society" offers legal protection from financial liabilities to owners in return for following the rules created for corporations. If a company gets into financial trouble, the workers, who could all be represented by their own lawyers, but, in situations like these, are often represented by unions, are one of the parties at the legal/financial table.

In my working career, I have sometimes been represented by unions, and mostly not. This is one of the times when union representation is very useful for everyone, because it just isn't practical either for the workers, the courts, or the company, to deal with thousands of separate negotiations. Pensions are a financial obligation of the company, and if the company can't pay, then the pensioners have a voice. Simple.
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Old Nov 16, 2012, 10:18 AM   #13
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I can't remember the last time I ate a hostess product or saw someone eating or even in possession of a hostess product. It seems their problem lies less with unions and more with the lack of obese seven year olds with their own money and no parents.
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Old Nov 16, 2012, 10:21 AM   #14
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Driven in part by competition in the snack market and a union that refuses to recognize that higher costs of doing business are a reality today requiring concessions to continue employment, iconic Hostess will soon be no more.

http://usat.ly/ZGs6jI
The spin! The inhumanity of it all! How about a few facts: ... Driscoll's proposed compensation package of $1.5 million, plus cash incentives and a $1.95 million "long term compensation" package. ... Hostess executives had received raises of up to 80% the year prior.
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Old Nov 16, 2012, 10:26 AM   #15
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How do you get what you said, from what I said
"Save jobs" is the reason you gave for the need for companies to evolve, as opposed to "remain profitable" or "stay competitive."
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Old Nov 16, 2012, 10:31 AM   #16
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"Save jobs" is the reason you gave for the need for companies to evolve, as opposed to "remain profitable" or "stay competitive."
Yes, when jobs are at risk, companies very often need to evolve. What has a particular company-saving measure got to do with the reason for a company's 'existence'?

Companies exist for all sorts of reasons, or were trying to find some liberal conspiracy?

Maybe the election result has driven some folk over the edge..
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Old Nov 16, 2012, 10:37 AM   #17
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Could have remodeled or branched out and produced something that wasn't utter disease. Instead they chose to size down and continue to peddle death during their first bankruptcy. Looks like nearly everything on their portfolio is designed to fill your arteries.

Lesson? Companies need to evolve to save jobs.
I do agree about them needing to evolve. But I think that in this case the union here has been the ultimate factor in their fall. Not that it's typical that unions are to blame, I just think it's the case here.
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Old Nov 16, 2012, 10:41 AM   #18
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Yes, when jobs are at risk, companies very often need to evolve. What has a particular company-saving measure got to do with the reason for a company's 'existence'?

Companies exist for all sorts of reasons, or were trying to find some liberal conspiracy?

Maybe the election result has driven some folk over the edge..
Dude. Relax.

Was.just.asking.a.question.based.upon.a.reasonable.reading.of.your.comment. Will refrain from doing so in future.
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Old Nov 16, 2012, 10:46 AM   #19
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I don't want to derail the thread, but I'm curious. Is this the consensus here - that companies exist to employ people? Put another way - the success/failure of a company can be measured by its payroll?
The success/failure of a company should be measured by a number of things including (but not limited too): quality of product, profitability, and providing stable, fair-paying jobs to dedicated employees.

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Originally Posted by kavika411 View Post
"Save jobs" is the reason you gave for the need for companies to evolve, as opposed to "remain profitable" or "stay competitive."
It's all of the above here. Companies need to evolve to stay competitive and profitable, which in turn should save jobs.

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Originally Posted by eric/ View Post
I do agree about them needing to evolve. But I think that in this case the union here has been the ultimate factor in their fall. Not that it's typical that unions are to blame, I just think it's the case here.
I don't see how you can blame the low-wage production employees for bad business decisions made by upper management. It's like blaming the guy screwing on the lug nuts on the Ford Explorer on the assembly line that the car is an unreliable piece of crap. It's not his fault, he just screws on the lug nut. It's the upper management who designed the thing that failed.
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Old Nov 16, 2012, 10:47 AM   #20
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I don't want to derail the thread, but I'm curious. Is this the consensus here - that companies exist to employ people? Put another way - the success/failure of a company can be measured by its payroll?
Its not a cut or dry answer. Economies require profit and wealth creation and people require jobs. Without either in healthy state, you have lots of problems. They are interdependent.
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Old Nov 16, 2012, 10:56 AM   #21
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Well there goes the "Twinkie defence"
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Old Nov 16, 2012, 11:01 AM   #22
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Well there goes the "Twinkie defence"
Brain curdling Spotted that y'day too
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Old Nov 16, 2012, 11:10 AM   #23
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Market forces at work. Twinkies are about as relevant today as celluloid film.
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Old Nov 16, 2012, 11:18 AM   #24
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I don't see how you can blame the low-wage production employees for bad business decisions made by upper management.
Agree 100%.

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It's like blaming the guy screwing on the lug nuts on the Ford Explorer on the assembly line that the car is an unreliable piece of crap. It's not his fault, he just screws on the lug nut. It's the upper management who designed the thing that failed.
My experience with Ford trucks is that they have been very reliable. Gas mileage mediocre, but, reliable. You should look around for a different example.
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Old Nov 16, 2012, 11:39 AM   #25
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I don't see how you can blame the low-wage production employees for bad business decisions made by upper management. It's like blaming the guy screwing on the lug nuts on the Ford Explorer on the assembly line that the car is an unreliable piece of crap. It's not his fault, he just screws on the lug nut. It's the upper management who designed the thing that failed.
That's a bad analogy.

This isn't workers vs management. It's the union vs the corporation. So when the union is unwilling to take reductions in liabilities or to see workers go because of binding contracts in order to preserve a company, good or bad businesses decisions being irrelevant here, than it's certainly the unions fault. And now, ALL of those individuals are out of work instead of just some, because of the union failing to compromise. So now the big execs walk away just fine, the union boss walks away just fine, and the workers lose their pensions and jobs.

This is an example of needing to be pragmatic. Now nobody has jobs. Way to go Hostess union!
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