United Biscuits may auction off biscuit division

Posted by Nicole Eckersley on 18th January 2011

The owners of United Biscuits are reportedly looking to auction the company’s biscuits division for around GBP1.5 billion (US$2.39 billion), after China’s Bright Food walked away from talks to acquire the whole company.

According to a report in The Mail on Sunday, the move would put the division, which makes brands like McVitie’s and Penguin, up for sale at a value of around nine times last year’s profits – which worth 80% of United Biscuits’ total GBP223m profit.

The process, which is likely to be handled by Goldman Sachs and JP Morgan, is likely to be amied at major food groups such as Campbell Soup Co. and Kraft Foods.

United Biscuits, which is owned by private-equity groups PAI Partners and Blackstone, had not responded to calls for comment as just-food went to press.

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