Blog: Katy AskewConAgra, B&G touted as potential Skippy suitors

Katy Askew | 12 November 2012

ConAgra Foods and B&G Foods are reportedly among those in the running to acquire Unilever's US peanut butter brand, Skippy.

Unilever announced it was "considering options" for the brand last month and - as we reported in our analysis of the move - one likely potential suitor was US group ConAgra.

ConAgra recently snapped up Unilever's frozen brands in the US and has indicated that it is hoping to drive growth through M&A. According to a Bloomberg report, which cited people familiar with the matter, ConAgra has made a preliminary approach for the business, which could potentially augment its Peter Pan peanut butter unit.  

Another potential buyer, the report suggested, is spreads-to-salsa manufacturer B&G Foods. As a US-focused manufacturer of shelf-stable products, Skippy would slot neatly into B&G's existing centre-store portfolio. And, like ConAgra, B&G has looked to build its portfolio through acquisitions of late: the company recently completed the purchase of New York Style and Old London brands from Chipita.

B&G has recently secured a batch of brands from Unilever. Last year, B&G acquired four brands from Unilever, so the two sides do have a relationship.

Add to this B&G's ship-shape balance sheet - which has been boosted by a stock offering the proceeds of which were used to paydown maturing debt and fund the New York Style, Old London purchase - and B&G certainly looks like a contender for Skippy.

Skippy generated full-year sales of around US$300m in 2011 and, according to analyst estimates, the disposal of Skippy is expected to generate proceeds of between US$300-400m.

The brand represents an attractive asset for those operating in the US food space. Skippy is the second-largest brand in the US nuts and seeds spreads category, with 17% value share. And, according to figures from Eurominitor International, the category itself is expected to report a compound annual growth rate of 2.6%, or in value terms US$200-230m, over the next five years.


BLOG

Hoping for a more mature discussion on GM

A conference being held in London today is taking on the ambitious topic of agricultural technology and specifically will be looking at the implementation of the UK government's Agricultural Technolog...

BLOG

Nestle, ConAgra ditch "diet" for "wellness" in frozen food push

As the importance of health has grow in consumers' minds, frozen food has been left out in the cold. But two major manufacturers in the US are looking to heat up the sector by claiming frozen food mea...

BLOG

Danone tight-lipped over Mead Johnson link rumours

Some analysts might be breathing a sigh of relief at news Danone is rejecting speculation it is about to swoop for infant-formula giant Mead Johnson. ...

BLOG

SIAL 2014: New UK food minister pledges action

Liz Truss, the UK's recently-appointed Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, went on a whistlestop tour of the country's exhibitors at the SIAL trade show in Paris yesterday, bef...

just-food homepage



Forgot your password?