The boards of Italian chocolate maker Ferrero and UK chocolate maker and retailer Thorntons have reached agreement on the terms of a recommended cash offer by Ferrero of 145 pence in cash for each Thorntons share, valuing Thorntons at approximately £111.9 million. The offer represents a premium of approximately 42.9% over the closing middle market […]
The boards of Italian chocolate maker Ferrero and UK chocolate maker and retailer Thorntons have reached agreement on the terms of a recommended cash offer by Ferrero of 145 pence in cash for each Thorntons share, valuing Thorntons at approximately £111.9 million.
The offer represents a premium of approximately 42.9% over the closing middle market price of 101.5 pence per Thorntons share on 19 June 2015, and 66.6% over the average closing middle market price per Thorntons share over the three month period ended 19 June 2015.
The Thorntons directors said that they consider the terms of the offer to be fair and reasonable and intend to recommend unanimously that Thorntons shareholders accept the offer.
“Ferrero is offering our shareholders an attractive premium to the average price of Thorntons’ shares over the last three months,” said Paul Wilkinson, chairman of Thorntons. “Although the prospects for Thorntons as an independent company remain strong as the company embarks on the next phase of its strategy, the board of Thorntons also recognises the potential benefits to the brand and the business, including employees and all stakeholders from combining with the Ferrero Group. Ferrero is a successful global confectionery business with a strong family heritage and as such represents a good cultural fit for Thorntons. The board of Thorntons therefore has given its unanimous recommendation for the offer from Ferrero.”
“Our business was founded nearly 60 years ago out of a passion for chocolate and with a commitment to quality,” said Giovanni Ferrero, CEO of Ferrero. “We delivered our best ever results in the UK in 2014, giving us confidence that now is the right time to broaden our roots in this important market. This transactions brings together two highly complementary businesses, but more importantly it unites two companies that share the same passion for growing brands, and a proud heritage, drive and culture built upon their family foundations. We have long admired Thortons and what they have achieved in the UK as demonstrated by their tremendous customer loyalty, and we look forward to working with their experienced team.”