Home Daily Blitz Kraft Pulls $143 Billion Unilever Bid After Early Opposition

Kraft Pulls $143 Billion Unilever Bid After Early Opposition


The following is an excerpt from Devin Banerjee | February 19, 2017 | Bloomberg.com |

Kraft Heinz Co. withdrew its $143 billion bid for Unilever two days after the approach became public, citing the Anglo-Dutch target’s reluctance to engage in discussions.

“Kraft Heinz’s interest was made public at an extremely early stage,” spokesman Michael Mullen said Sunday in an e-mailed statement. “Our intention was to proceed on a friendly basis, but it was made clear Unilever did not wish to pursue a transaction. It is best to step away early so both companies can focus on their own independent plans to generate value.”

The decision to withdraw the offer came after 3G Capital and Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway Inc., which together own about half of Kraft Heinz, decided that Unilever’s negative response made a friendly transaction impossible, leaving no choice but to walk away, people with knowledge of the situation said. Both also believed that a protracted war of words wasn’t in the best interest of Kraft Heinz and would risk souring future deal opportunities, the people said, asking not to be named because the process was private.

Representatives for Berkshire Hathaway and Brazilian investment firm 3G didn’t respond to messages seeking comment Sunday.

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