Hershey Foods Completes Sale of US Pasta Business

COMPANY PRESS RELEASE: Hershey Foods Corporation and New World Pasta today announced that the purchase of Hershey's U.S. pasta business by New World has been completed.

The transaction included the American Beauty, Ideal by San Giorgio, Light 'n Fluffy, P&R, Mrs. Weiss, Ronzoni, San Giorgio and Skinner pasta brands, along with six manufacturing plants. As a result of the transaction, Hershey received $450 million in cash and retained a minority interest in the business. The transaction is expected to result in an after-tax gain of approximately $1.13 per share (diluted) which will be recorded in the first quarter of 1999.

"This is a very exciting opportunity for New World Pasta," said C. Mickey Skinner, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of New World Pasta. "Moving forward, we plan to focus our efforts on what we do best: delivering quality products, exceptional service and premier value both to our customers and our consumers."