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M&A and joint ventures

Hormel goes nuts for new asset Planters

12 February 2021 | Dean Best

Hormel Foods has bought Kraft Heinz's Planters snacks arm. Paying more than $3bn for the assets, it's the largest deal in upbeat Hormel's history. Market reaction was more muted. ... read more


Kerry's consumer exit may need more than one deal

29 January 2021 | Dean Best

Speculation has continued about Kerry Group's future in consumer foods. With the Irish company's consumer assets spread across categories, an exit may take multiple transactions. ... read more


Mondelez's M&A strategists continue health kick

5 January 2021 | Dean Best

The US giant has bought another healthier snacks firm and, although these types of deals tend to be of smaller brands, it's right to react to evolving consumer trends through M&A. ... read more


Cheese giant Bel's bold plant-based bid

18 October 2020 | Dean Best

Cheese giant Bel has issued more detail on its plant-based plans – and, as Dean Best reports, could give the fledgling market for cheese alternatives a shot in the arm. ... read more


Aryzta's options in wake of investor battle

18 September 2020 | Simon Harvey

Aryzta's two-largest investors came up trumps on Wednesday, with Urs Jordi, their pick as the embattled baker's chairman, elected. But what next for the business? ... read more


Blackstone's Oatly backing may unsettle some but there are benefits

4 September 2020 | Dean Best

Dairy-alternative darling Oatly has faced criticism for accepting investment from Blackstone – but those who want a more sustainable food system should see the advantages. ... read more


How Covid-19 might shape food M&A

5 May 2020 | Stefan Kirk, M&A advisors Glenboden

Out of the blue, Covid-19 has arrived to, M&A advisor Stefan Kirk argues, shake life into the food M&A market once the pandemic recedes. ... read more


Why Yofix backing highlights dairy-free shift

6 February 2020 | Dean Best

The backing for Israeli dairy-free start-up Yofix Investments by two major European dairy companies shows a key macro trend could become a competitive flank in dairy alternatives. ... read more


The most-read opinion pieces on just-food in 2019

19 December 2019 | Dean Best

Which of the opinion pieces from just-food's team of industry experts gave you food for thought in 2019? Here are the top ten most-read. ... read more


Why food M&A has dried up

3 December 2019 | Stefan Kirk, M&A advisors Glenboden

Data suggests pressure on deal-making in the packaged food industry in 2019. M&A advisor Stefan Kirk puts forward some possible reasons. ... read more


The US food industry in 2020 - the megatrends to watch

19 November 2019 | Victor Martino

Our columnist Victor Martino predicts the six megatrends which will have a marked impact on the US food industry in 2020. ... read more


How sales growth, sustainability are at centre of Unilever CEO's pitch to investors

12 June 2019 | Dean Best

Unilever CEO Alan Jope is nearly six months into the job and this week set out to investors his priorities for the consumer goods giant. ... read more


Why Kraft Heinz's travails aren't a surprise

25 February 2019 | Dean Best

The business strategy pursued by Kraft Heinz's owners drove margins and shook up competitors but there have always been question marks over the company's top-line prospects. ... read more


Why Unilever gobbled up Graze

8 February 2019 | Dean Best

With the acquisition of Graze, Unilever steps up its interest in direct-to-consumer and could have an eye on mainstream channels in other countries, writes Dean Best. ... read more


Why PepsiCo may get best tune out of Pipers away from UK grocery

11 November 2018 | Dean Best

PepsiCo's third acquisition in five months has seen the US group snap up UK firm Pipers Crisps, a business in its core category – but the snacks giant will have to think carefully about how to grow the business. ... read more


How food start-ups can stand out from crowd and catch an investor's eye

29 October 2018 | John Stapleton

Large numbers of investors, with deep pockets, are keen to invest in the right food start-up venture, John Stapleton writes. ... read more


Amazon-Whole Foods one year on - what's changed?

13 June 2018 | Victor Martino

A year since Amazon shook the grocery sector with its acquisition of upmarket US retailer Whole Foods Market, just-food's Stateside columnist Victor Martino weighs up what the deal has meant for the two businesses - and for the wider industry.... read more


Why latest Tyrrells takeover is no major surprise

18 May 2018 | Dean Best

UK-based savoury snacks business Tyrrells is getting its third owner in two years - but the latest deal is no surprise, writes Dean Best.... read more


What might Pinnacle Foods' new activist investor mean for US group?

20 April 2018 | Dean Best

Pinnacle Foods has often been touted as a possible acquisition target - and now activist investor Jana Partners has taken a position in the US group that talk will intensify.... read more


M&A, rather than Brexit, is behind Unilever's HQ decision

16 March 2018 | Dean Best

Unilever this week announced a change in its legal structure, which will see the FMCG behemoth have its main base in the Netherlands. The UK media swiftly pointed to Brexit - but the key factor would likely have been to have given the group more options when it comes to M&A.... read more


Financial market 'corrections' - should we worry? 

6 February 2018 | Dave Leggett

The last 24 hours have seen a wave of sell-offs on global stock markets. Is there cause for concern? Yes, but there is also a need for some perspective and there is no reason to believe that a global economic recession is imminent or inevitable. ... read more


The challenger brand challenge has just begun

11 January 2018 | Victor Martino

just-food's US columnist Victor Martino kicks off 2018 with a message all food majors in the US should heed - as, for that matter, should those operating further afield.... read more


Eyeing Asia, Saputo moves for Murray Goulburn - editor's viewpoint

30 October 2017 | Dean Best

Dean Best weighs up why Saputo has moved to buy the embattled Australian dairy group.... read more


Recent M&A moves show Nestle has woken up and smelt the coffee

18 September 2017 | Dean Best

Nestle's investment in US coffee roaster and retailer Blue Bottle is another sign of a change in the food giant's M&A strategy since the arrival of CEO Mark Schneider earlier this year, Dean Best writes.... read more


Activist grabs headlines but change was already on way at Nestle

29 June 2017 | Dean Best

Activist investors putting pressure on food companies is not new, especially not in recent years, although Nestle's stature in the industry may have raised eyebrows as US investment fund Third Point made the world's largest food business the latest to feel the heat. However, there were already signs of change at Nestle under new CEO Mark Schneider, Dean Best argues.... read more


Radical thinking needed to revitalise Big Food - opinion

28 April 2017 | Martin Deboo

With first-quarter results rolling in, Jefferies consumer goods analyst Martin Deboo argues the numbers underline the issues facing the sector's largest players.... read more


Unilever’s latest blueprint contains no huge surprises. Yet - editor's viewpoint

7 April 2017 | Dean Best

Unilever announced the fruits of its business review - convened after the company brushed off interest from Kraft Heinz - yesterday (6 April). The Knorr and Magnum maker set out a measured plan, which included the wise decision to leave the spreads business. But could bolder action be on the horizon in the longer term? Dean Best reports.... read more


Kraft Heinz's Unilever approach shines light on investors and sustainability - column

17 March 2017 | Ravi Varghese, Ceres

One talking point that emerged from Kraft Heinz's approach for Unilever was the companies' approaches when it comes to corporate responsibility and sustainability. Unilever is seen as being in the vanguard of developing a sustainable business; Kraft Heinz, with its emphasis on cost control and margin improvement, less so. But how far do investors care? In a guest column, Ravi Varghese of US sustainability non-profit Ceres challenges mainstream investor thinking that sustainability is a drag on efficiency.... read more


Don't rule out Kraft and Mondelez going back to the future - editor's viewpoint

15 December 2016 | Dean Best

The speculation linking Kraft Heinz to a possible bid for Mondelez International is casting just-food's mind back seven years and giving it a wry smile at the thought of a company reunited.... read more


What next for the new Mars Wrigley Confectionery... and for Warren Buffett?

10 October 2016 | Dean Best

Mars has moved to take full control of Wrigley, buying the minority stake held in the chewing gum maker by Warren Buffett. The deal could create a stronger competitor, particularly in the US, but there are some more strategic questions for Mars to answer, while the transaction can only add to Buffett's firepower should he wish to make more acquisitions in the food industry, writes Dean Best.... read more


What next for UK turkey processor Bernard Matthews?

23 September 2016 | Dean Best

There is hope the embattled UK turkey processor can be revitalised under the stewardship of Ranjit Singh Boparan, the UK businessman with extensive interests in poultry. However, there are questions about what will happen to the pensions of Bernard Matthews' staff, while the company's commercial performance is in need of improvement.... read more


Brexit sparks uncertainty over food rules and trade for UK - comment

24 June 2016 | Keith Nuthall

It is hard to predict just what Brexit will mean for food and drink regulations in the UK and for the country's trade arrangements with the EU, as well as third countries. Keith Nuthall sets out what could happen next.... read more


Kellogg uses Kashi to belatedly join the fray - Editor's Viewpoint

17 June 2016 | Dean Best

Kellogg has this week made its first acquisition in the US for over four years, snapping up fledgling snack bar maker Pure Organic. The deal is similar to those made by a number of Kellogg's US packaged food peers in recent months as some of the big names in the industry try to adapt to changing consumer trends in the country. Dean Best reflects on the move.... read more


McCormick & Co. has appetite for deals - editor's viewpoint

20 April 2016 | Dean Best

Just a week after dropping its interest in Premier Foods, McCormick & Co. announced the acquisition of Australian chilled herbs firm Botanical Food Co. When the US herbs and spices giant's interest in Premier emerged, McCormick said it had a "pipeline" of targets and industry watchers expect the company to continue to look to M&A for growth.... read more


New private-equity giant L Catterton will stir interest in M&A circles

6 January 2016 | Dean Best

A striking transaction has been announced in the private-equity world, with US buy-out house Catterton to join forces with the investment arm of luxury goods group LVMH - and right along the consumer-facing parts of the food sector companies will be watching closely.... read more


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