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October 1, 2019

Unilever says “several parties” interested in Continental Foods assets

Unilever has confirmed it has started a strategic review of its Continental Foods business in Australia and New Zealand.

By Dean Best

Unilever has confirmed it has started a strategic review of its Continental Foods business in Australia and New Zealand with a sale one option on the table for which “several parties” have indicated an interest.

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What’s the forecast for the food and grocery industry?

The food and grocery sector thrived during the pandemic, largely due to the shutdown of the food service industry and the sector’s subsequent necessity, panic-induced bulk purchasing, and spending more time at home. The market has grown as a result of inflation. Consumer unwillingness to go out and socialize, and the reopening of several hospitality facilities, helped maintain the demand for groceries, particularly online, in 2021. As consumer behavior changes, we consume more food and drink at home, and inflation increases basket sizes. GlobalData predicts that the sector will continue to hold a higher share than had been predicted prior to the pandemic. This is true despite the fact that the food and grocery sector's share of overall retail will decline from its peak in 2020. This report will discuss market forecasts and key themes in the global food & grocery industry in 2022 and beyond. It covers:
  • Market drivers and inhibitors
  • Five-year forecasts and the impact of COVID-19
  • The performance of the online channel versus offline
  • Major trends in the market including rapid delivery, ambient retailing, supply chain disruption, and inflation
Assess developments within this sector to help your business thrive in 2022 and beyond.
by GlobalData
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The Australian Financial Review had reported US-based private-equity firm KKR, which completed a deal for the Anglo-Dutch consumer goods giant’s international spreads business last year, had drawn up a non-binding offer for the Continental Foods operations. However, a spokesperson for the investor declined to comment when contacted by just-food.

The Continental Foods portfolio includes soups, sauces, stocks and, according to Unilever, is a profitable business. 

Unilever, the owner of brands such as Ben & Jerry’s ice cream and Hellmann’s mayonnaise, said it had hired Swiss investment bank UBS to assist in the review, suggesting a sale of Continental Foods could be on the cards.

The statement said: “The review will consider the best options to unlock the full potential of the profitable business and its state-of-the-art manufacturing facility at Tatura, near Shepparton in Victoria [Australia]. One possible result of the review is a change of ownership – but no decisions have been made.  

“Several parties have expressed interest in the Continental brand, reflecting recognition of the quality and potential of the business. Beyond this we are not able to comment further on the process.”

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Free Report
img

What’s the forecast for the food and grocery industry?

The food and grocery sector thrived during the pandemic, largely due to the shutdown of the food service industry and the sector’s subsequent necessity, panic-induced bulk purchasing, and spending more time at home. The market has grown as a result of inflation. Consumer unwillingness to go out and socialize, and the reopening of several hospitality facilities, helped maintain the demand for groceries, particularly online, in 2021. As consumer behavior changes, we consume more food and drink at home, and inflation increases basket sizes. GlobalData predicts that the sector will continue to hold a higher share than had been predicted prior to the pandemic. This is true despite the fact that the food and grocery sector's share of overall retail will decline from its peak in 2020. This report will discuss market forecasts and key themes in the global food & grocery industry in 2022 and beyond. It covers:
  • Market drivers and inhibitors
  • Five-year forecasts and the impact of COVID-19
  • The performance of the online channel versus offline
  • Major trends in the market including rapid delivery, ambient retailing, supply chain disruption, and inflation
Assess developments within this sector to help your business thrive in 2022 and beyond.
by GlobalData
Enter your details here to receive your free Report.

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