Arnott’s biscuits have been passed on again — but not back into Australian hands. Campbell’s soup company had owned Arnott’s outright since 1997 and will now sell it for A$3.1b, according to media reports.
US private equity firm, Kohlberg Kravis Roberts said it is buying Campbell Soup Co’s Australian snacks unit Arnott’s that will give it ownership of top-selling biscuit brands such as Tim Tam, in the multi-billion dollar deal. The Australian Financial Review reported earlier without citing sources that the agreed sale price was US$2.2 billion.
A Campbell Soup spokeswoman declined to comment on the report. “The process to divest Arnott’s and the rest of our international operations is ongoing,” the spokeswoman for the U.S. food company said in a statement.
Australian media had reported that PEP bid for Arnott’s. Mondelez was also cited by Australian and other media as interested in the business, which the U.S. company has declined to comment on. Representatives for PEP also declined to comment.
Campbell put its international unit and “fresh” units up for sale last August under pressure from investors to improve profitability and stock performance. This month, it sold its Danish unit Kelsen Group to an affiliate of Nutella maker Ferrero SpA for $300 million.
Did you know?
Arnott’s traces its history back 172 years to a bakery in Newcastle opened by a Scottish migrant.