Butter late than never: Unilever has finally sold its spreads business

Share
Butter late than never: Unilever has finally sold its spreads business

Anglo-Dutch consumer goods manufacturer Unilever PLC said late Friday that it will sell its global spreads business to USA buyout fund KKR & Co LP for EUR6.83 billion on a cash and debt free basis.

The operation employs 2,300 people around the world and also owns the brands ProActiv, Becel, Blue Band, Rama and Country Crock.

The move follows a wide-ranging review of its business which was prompted by a takeover attempt by rival Kraft.

Kohlberg Kravis Roberts, or KKR, has won the auction to acquire Unilever's (UN) spread business, the Financial Times reports, citing two sources.

The deal is expected to be completed in the middle of next year, and is subject to regulator approval in certain jurisdictions.

"The announcement marks a further step in reshaping and sharpening our portfolio for long-term growth", he added.

Paul Polman, chief executive of Unilever, said: "After a long history in Unilever, we decided that the future of the spreads business would lie outside the group". "The consideration recognizes the market leading brands and the improved momentum we have achieved". In 2016, the business had a turnover of EUR3.03 billion, adjusted earnings of EUR680 million and assets of EUR1.11 billion.

KKR is buying the brands - which it said had a "firm foundation for future growth" - even though some analysts believe the sector is slowing down as consumers turn away from margarine. Liabeuf will continue to lead the spreads business after the sale.

Unilever shares are up 1.3% today to 4194.5p, but the business did not announce the sale until after markets closed at 4:30pm.

It posted a 2.6% increase in underlying sales for the period to 13.2 billion euro (£11.8 billion), below expectations and down from 3% in the first half of the year. It plans to sell its underperforming spreads business, which could yield up to £6bn.

This year Unilever has snapped up small brands including Tazo tea, Sundial Brands and Carver Korea.

The spreads business attracted interest from some of the biggest names in private equity, including Blackstone, which failed to make it to the second round with it's joint approach with CVC, Clayton Dubilier & Rice and Bain Capital.

Share

Advertisement

Related Posts

Japan says N.Korea not interested in meaningful talks
He called on North Korea to show restraint. "So we continue to indicate to them that we need a period of quiet. President Trump has been even more vocal, railing against negotiations with North Korea for months.

Kim Kardashian West spent a year deciding her surrogate
Instead of the massive tree Jenner's become known for, Kris instead fiercely trimmed four handsome smaller trees. From the excitement we heard on tape, it seems that North and Saint West enjoyed grandma Kris' decorations too.

Xilinx (XLNX) PT Raised to $78.00
In other Xilinx news, insider Victor Peng sold 25,000 shares of the business's stock in a transaction on Thursday, November 16th. Also, it has an estimated price-earnings (P/E) multiple of 24.15 and a trailing 12-month price-earnings (P/E) multiple of 28.61.

China's top smartphone makers are in talks with United States wireless carriers
According to Bloomberg , the two smartphone makers are now in talks with AT&T and Verizon Wireless to sell phones stateside. While Apple's latest flagship model retails for over $1,000, Chinese rivals sell handsets at much more affordable prices.

Were Analysts Bullish Noble Energy, Inc. (NYSE:NBL) This Week?
The (Simple Month Average) SMA20 is at 0.96 percent, its SMA50 Value is -2.72% and SMA200 value is reported as -8.67 Percent. It increased, as 96 investors sold GWW shares while 180 reduced holdings. 4 funds opened positions while 2 raised stakes.

Buys 2752 Shares of Boeing Co (BA)
The institutional investor owned 380,000 shares of the aircraft producer's stock after selling 90,000 shares during the period. Bank of America set a $320.00 price objective on Boeing and gave the stock a "buy" rating in a research report on Tuesday.

General Dynamics Target of Unusually Large Options Trading (GD)
Rathbone Brothers Public Limited Company holds 0.02% of its portfolio in General Dynamics Corporation (NYSE:GD) for 2,398 shares. Singapore Technologies Telemedia Pte Ltd holds 99.47% of its portfolio in Level 3 Communications, Inc. for 65.03 million shares.

Market Notes: Watching Shares of Canadian Pacific Railway (CP)
BidaskClub cut shares of Canadian Pacific Railway from a "hold" rating to a "sell" rating in a report on Thursday, August 24th. Nymox Pharmaceutical Corporation (NASDAQ:NYMX) has risen 67.11% since December 14, 2016 and is uptrending.

Austrian Niki airline's grounding strands thousands
Lufthansa's purchase of LGW would generate €18 million to be applied to repaying the German government loan, Air Berlin also said. Thousands of European travelers could be left stranded by the bankruptcy of Austrian budget carrier Niki.

Congressional candidate drops out of race after sex harassment suit surfaces
Funkhouser filed the federal lawsuit in October 2005, four months after he was sacked as a human resources manager at OneLab. The district contains a mix of affluent, GOP-leaning suburbs and poorer, heavily Democratic city neighborhoods.

© 2015 ExpressNewsline. All Rights reserved.