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Flowers Industries


, which is in the process of selling its

Keebler Foods

( KBL) stake to



, posted third-quarter earnings that missed analysts' estimates by 3 cents, but rose sharply from a year ago.

The Thomasville, Ga., company earned $13 million, or 13 cents a share, compared with a loss of $9.1 million, or 9 cents a share, in the year-ago period. Seven analysts polled by

First Call/Thomson Financial

expected the company to earn 16 cents a share.

Sales rose to $1.02 billion from $982.7 million last year.

Flowers expects to receive about $12.50 a share in cash, or about $1.25 billion, paid to its shareholders from the Keebler deal. Flowers will spin off the remainder of its businesses to shareholders in the form of a new company, Flowers Foods, which will own and operate the traditional Flowers bakery businesses.

Kellogg will own 100% of Flowers Industries, which is expected to be renamed

Keebler Holding


Shares of Flowers were recently unchanged at $15.19 in

New York Stock Exchange