Oberweis Dairy, which filed bankruptcy two weeks ago, has found two potential buyers.

On Tuesday, the 109-year-old company received a stalking horse bid from local business owner Brian Boomsma, who plans to purchase substantially all of the assets and operate and grow the company. The stalking horse bid sets the minimum for an auction. Boomsma is the founder of Dutch Farms, a family-owned dairy and food distribution company in Chicago.

“We are thrilled to have a business leader like Brian Boomsma interested in investing in Oberweis and enabling the company to continue to move forward and prosper,” Oberweis president Adam Kraber said in a statement. “We continue to be grateful to our loyal customers, vendors, and committed employees who have supported us through this process.”

The Hoffmann Family of Companies, a multi-vertical private equity firm with 100-plus national brands, also announced Tuesday that it entered discussions with various stakeholders to acquire all of Oberweis’ assets. The company said it understood a stalking horse bidder was in place and that it intends to make a competitive offer to buy the dairy group. The organization is optimistic about delivering the highest bid based on its due diligence.

“Our vision is all about quality, legacy and longevity—we’re not looking to buy and flip businesses,” Geoff Hoffmann, co-CEO of Hoffmann Family of Companies, said in a statement. “The Oberweis name has been associated with delicious, premium quality products for decades. Notwithstanding its recent financial struggles, we see an opportunity to revive the company’s heritage of success. This may take many different shapes or forms and we are highly enthusiastic about the prospect of our involvement.”

Oberweis, with about 40 retail ice cream shops, expects to complete its reorganization process and sale in late June.

The Oberweis bankruptcy led to the closure of its manufacturing plant in North Aurora, Illinois, and layoffs for nearly 130 employees. The company, founded by Peter Oberweis, began as a neighborhood milk delivery service and expanded over generations. Despite growing revenue, reaching over $95 million in 2023, the company faced financial challenges due to shifts in consumer preferences toward alternative dairy products. Mismanagement, including excessive spending on distribution and marketing, further strained its finances. Attempts to cut costs and seek capital proved insufficient.

Previously, Oberweis initiated a sales process and found a potential stalking horse bidder, but that company dropped out in late March. With liquidity issues continuing to rise, the company filed bankruptcy weeks later without a stalking horse bidder in place.

Finance, Story