Koffee Kup Bakery draws interest from Mrs. Dunster’s

Koffee Kup Bakery draws interest from Mrs. Dunster’s

BURLINGTON, VA. — Blair and Rosalyn Hyslop, a husband-and-wife team that own New Brunswick-based Mrs. Dunster’s Bakery, announced May 28 that they intend to buy Koffee Kup Bakery. Based in Burlington, Koffee Kup Bakery is a manufacturer of baked foods, including bread, donuts and English muffins, serving customers in the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic regions. The company ceased operations on April 26 at its three baking facilities located in Brattleboro, Vt.; Burlington, Vt.; and North Grosvenor Dale, Conn.

“We are thrilled to announce today that we have formed a new company, called North Atlantic Baking Co.,” Mr. Hyslop said. “We have been advised that North Atlantic Baking Co. is the preferred purchaser of the Koffee Kup assets, and we are focused on moving quickly to conclude negotiations, which will lead to restarting operations very soon.”

Mr. Hyslop said the plan is to operate the two Vermont bakeries and “enter discussions with third parties with the intent to sell the Superior Bakery in Connecticut.”

“North Atlantic Baking Co. is actively negotiating a leasing agreement with the receiver to facilitate a quick return to baking in the Burlington and Brattleboro bakeries; we are hopeful to have this completed within a few days,” Mr. Hyslop said. “The lease agreement will allow us to quickly get employees back to work and products back on the shelves while we work through the formal transferring of assets, the details of which have been largely agreed to.”

If the transaction is finalized, Mr. and Mrs. Hyslop would become co-owners and co-chief executive officers of the North Atlantic Baking Co., while remaining in charge of Mrs. Dunster’s. Mrs. Dunster’s bakes donuts, cookies, brownies, crescents, bread, rolls and other baked foods.

“We are excited to see the company once again become family owned,” Ms. Hyslop said. “We already deliver our fresh baked goods to every store in New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, and the state of Maine several times a week with Mrs. Dunster’s and have dreamed for many years of expanding our reach to the rest of New England. We are ready to devote our experience, passion and resources to this project, and are excited to work with these talented and experienced employees in a positive, family-oriented workspace.”

Founded in 1940 to make and deliver donuts by bicycle to mom-and-pop stores in Burlington, Koffee Kup Bakery received a boost following its acquisition of Vermont Bread Co. in 2013 and has since grown into a company distributing its products to more than 4,500 delivery points supported by a 135-route distribution network.

Matthew Chaney, an employee of Vermont Bread Co., filed a class action complaint on April 29 in the US District Court, District of Vermont against Koffee Kup Bakery after the company abruptly closed.

In the complaint, Mr. Chaney is seeking $5 million on behalf of the company’s 500 “similarly situated employees” who were terminated on April 26 with no notice for damages in the amount of 60 days’ pay and ERISA benefits. According to the lawsuit, Koffee Kup failed to provide the employees 60 days’ advance written notice as required by the federal Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act (WARN). As part of the WARN Act, companies with more than 100 workers are required to provide 60 days’ notice of a plant closing and mass layoffs of 50 or more workers at a single site.