United Biscuits dismisses speculation linking ex-Tesco chief to snacks arm08 October 2012
United Biscuits has rejected media reports linking ex-Tesco boss Sir Terry Leahy to the company's KP Snacks division but has confirmed that the unit will eventually be sold.
Last week, Sky News reported that Leahy was interested in purchasing the savoury snacks business while Fox Business linked German firm Intersnack with a takeover in September. Chinese beverage firm Wahaha, Kraft and Kellogg’s have also been touted as potential buyers.
“Regarding the various reports speculating on the sale of the business, this is still purely speculation and we are still not commenting on it,” Keren McCarron, United Biscuits’ corporate communications manager told BakeryandSnacks.com.
McCarron added that the sale of the business remained inevitable under United Biscuits private equity ownership but provided no timescale.
In August, United separated its biscuit and snacks businesses and distributed a sales document to companies who may be interested in buying the unit which is valued at £520 million.
“The snacks business is the second-largest bagged snack company in the UK and has shown consistent top and bottom-line growth for the past five years.” said a company statement in August.
“This product category remains dynamic, currently growing at 6% per annum and the UB board sees substantial growth opportunities both in the UK and internationally. The new chief executive (Kraft Foods UK and Ireland president Nick Bunker), together with the recently appointed dedicated management team, will provide the focus to move this business to its next level,” added the statement.
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