Retailers, consumers and prices
U.S. chocolate maker Hershey and Italy’s privately owned Ferrero both said separately they were evaluating their options over a possible bid for Cadbury, the world’s No. 2 confectioner, but analysts still see hostile bidder Kraft’s $16.2 billion offer as the front runner.
Reuters and other media have reported Hershey, known for its namesake chocolates and Reese’s peanut butter cups, and Ferrero were discussing a joint bid and the UK Takeover panel asked the companies to clarify their intentions. They gave no hint whether they may be working together on a joint bid.
Analysts are skeptical, however, as Hershey is smaller than Cadbury, has high debts and is controlled by a charitable trust, while the secretive Ferrero, famed for its Nutella chocolate spread and Ferrero Rocher chocolates, has made few acquisitions. Most analysts and investors expect Kraft to raise its bid.
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