Italian brothers Pietro and Giovanni Ferrero, whose grandfather invented the chocolate hazelnut gloop inside every Rocher that sticks to your teeth, have been linked to a deal with Cadbury that could keep the British confectioner out of the clutches of the US group Kraft, the world’s second biggest food company.
Kraft, maker of Oreo cookies and Toblerone, has tabled an unwanted £9.7bn takeover bid for Cadbury which the Bournville-based group is determined to fight off. Now the Italian brothers, who are based in Belgium, could wade in to offer support in a link-up that would see Ferrero’s famous nut chocolates, together with its Tic Tac mints, lined up alongside Wispas, Dairy Milk and Bertie Bassett’s Licorice Allsorts on the ambassador’s table.
Anyone who invents treats like Nutella is OK by me.
An Italian newspaper said the Ferreros, backed by other financial investors, could form a “friendly” alliance with Cadbury to stop Kraft in its tracks…
Despite its kitsch reputation in the UK, Ferrero has grown to 18 factories with 22,000 employees and has annual sales of more than €6bn. The ambassador’s favourite chocolates, with their distinctive crispy shells, ostentatious gold wrappers and badly dubbed adverts, did not come along until 1980 but have helped turn the Ferrero family into one of Italy’s richest dynasties…
Cadbury also refused to comment but a source close to the company said: “…Cadbury is not up for sale, but the company would give proper consideration to any offer that valued it properly and would be of interest to shareholders.”
C’mon guys. Stop with the lawyerly answers!
You’re dealing with the guys who sponsored Michael Schumacher’s Ferrari. That’s enough class for the whole world.
UPDATE: Cripes. Hershey is getting into the act, too. There must be a sexier way to sort this out.