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Unilever Eyes Steps To Boost Shareholder Value After Saying No To Kraft's $143-Billion Bid

Unilever said it plans to conduct a strategic review aimed at improving shareholder value, after the consumer-goods giant rejected a proposed takeover by Kraft Heinz Co. Unilever shares gained 5.7 percent in London, back to the levels immediately following Kraft's announcement of its $143 billion bid. According to market observers, Unilever's strategic review could bring about a breakup of the company or an increase in its merger-and-acquisition activity.

"Unilever Reviewing Options for Change After Kraft Bid Fails", Bloomberg, February 22, 2017

Unilever Launches Strategic Review After Kraft Heinz Drops Takeover Bid

After Kraft Heinz withdrew its two-day-old unsolicited takeover bid for Unilever, CEO Paul Polman launched a strategic review of the company to determine how it can increase its value, deter unwanted buyers, and keep investors loyal. Some observers said the review could lead to a breakup – involving perhaps jettisoning the troubled spreads unit. Or it may lead the company toward more aggressive cost-saving measures. Unilever’s share price leapt 5.7 percent when Kraft Heinz dropped its $143 billion takeover proposal. The strategic review is expected to be completed by early April. [ Flora spread image credit: © ]

"Unilever Reviewing Options for Change After Kraft Bid Fails", Bloomberg, February 22, 2017

Hain Celestial Expands Premium Soup Offerings In U.K. With Acquisition

Organic and natural food marketer Hain Celestial is expanding its presence in the premium soup market in the U.K. with the acquisition of Yorkshire Provender Limited. The company’s premium branded soup and other products are sold in retailers, on-the-go food outlets and food service providers. Hain owns the New Covent Garden Soup Co. and Cully & Sully brands in the U.K. In 2016 Yorkshire Provender (North Yorkshire) had approximately £6 million ($7.5 million) in net sales and is expected to be accretive to Hain Celestial's (Lake Success, N.Y.) earnings in fiscal year 2018. [ Image credit: © Yorkshire Provender ]

"Hain Celestial Announces Strategic Acquisition", News release, Hain Celestial, February 16, 2017

Strong Performance For Unilever Indonesia In 2016

Unilever Indonesia achieved a 9.8 percent in net revenue growth in 2016 along with a 9.2 percent in net income. Revenue increased from Rp 36.5 trillion in 2015 to Rp 40 trillion last year, with its home and personal care business segment accounting for 69 percent of total sales. Unilever Indonesia chief financial officer Tevilyan Yudhistira Rusli said the company's overall business performance had been “quite outstanding” and is supported by their product innovation, including last year's launch of Molto and Sunsilk brands. Unilever Indonesia has set aside €115 million for factory expansion, mostly for production of home and personal care products. [Image credit © Unilever]

"Unilever Indonesia's Net Income Surges 9.2% in 2016", Jakarta Globe, February 16, 2017

“Guilt Free” Maybe, But Are Those PepsiCo Drinks And Snacks Healthful?

After PepsiCo reported that last quarter sales rose three percent for snacks and one percent for beverages, CEO Indra Nooyi told securities analysts that the company is betting that "positive" ingredients such as grains, fruits and vegetables will drive growth. The company calls foods with these ingredients “guilt free,” despite other questionable additives. Salty baked Lay’s potato chips are dubbed guilt free, as are Naked beverages, some of which are packed with sugary, fruit-based calories. Quaker’s 180-calorie "breakfast cookie" is loaded with fat and sugar along with the oats. Nooyi said 45 percent of PepsiCo’s revenues come from products designated “guilt free.” And despite pledges from Coke, Pepsi and Dr Pepper in 2014 to cut the ...  More

"Pepsico Sees Growth From "Guilt-Free" Items Like Baked Lay's", Associated Press, February 15, 2017

Snyder’s-Lance Adds Organic Version To Pretzel Cracker Line

Snack food manufacturer Snyder's-Lance, Inc., announced an addition to its Snack Factory Pretzel Crisp line. The company said the new Organic Original Pretzel Crisps, which will be available for a limited time nationwide, are also Non-GMO Project verified. Pretzel Crisps are the first flat-baked pretzel cracker. At 110 calories a preserving, the organic variety contain no saturated fat or trans fat, no cholesterol, preservatives, artificial flavorings or colors. [ Image credit: © Snack Factory ]

"Snack Factory Introduces USDA-Certified Organic Pretzel Crisps", News release, Snyder's-Lance, Inc., February 07, 2017

PepsiCo To Expand Beverage R&D Facilities In N.Y.

PepsiCo is negotiating with the town of Mount Pleasant, N.Y. (Westchester County), to expand its beverage research campus with a three-story, 122,000-square-foot R&D facility. The mayor of the town welcomed the news because the new facility would not only mean increased property taxes, it would provide employment. The town’s industrial development agency may grant the company sales and use tax exemptions on purchases of construction materials, as well as a partial real property tax abatement in the form of a payment in lieu of taxes agreement. [ PepsiCo headquarters, Purchase, N.Y.; image credit: © Peter Bond, Wikimedia ]

"PepsiCo Planning R&D Expansion, Renovations in Mount Pleasant", Westchester County Business Journal, February 02, 2017

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