November 18, 2009
by Canadian Packaging Staff
Two chocolate makers–The Hershey Co. and Ferrero International SA–confirmed on November 18 that they are considering making a bid for Cadbury PLC, who are also being aggressively pursued by Kraft Foods Inc. via a hostile take-over, raising the possibility of a takeover battle for the British company.
"Hershey confirms that it is reviewing its options and at this stage there can be no assurance that any proposal or offer from Hershey will be forthcoming,” notes Hershey in a release to the London Stock Exchange. Italy’s Ferrero also posted a similar statement.
"Significant questions remain regarding how any deal might be put together, not least in terms of product and/or geographical segmentation,” said Jeremy Batstone-Carr, analyst at Charles Stanley & Co. "Whilst aware that seldom does smoke exist without fire, the likely complexities associated with a rival approach for Cadbury in purely practical terms leave us strongly of the view that Kraft remains the strongest rival but that it will need to increase its offer in order to win control.