Battle for Cadbury heats up as Nestlé enters the fray

The battle to acquire Cadbury has intensified with Kraft understood to be ready to up its bid following reports of a rival offer from Nestlé.

US food company Kraft is believed to be considering upping its £9.8bn bid or increasing the cash on offer if a rival suitor for the Dairy Milk maker emerges.

The reports come as it emerges that Nestlé is believed to be considering its options, one of which could be a rival bid for Cadbury.

Nestlé has owned another British confectionar, Rowntree, since 1988. 

News of Swiss firm’s interest follows last week’s reports that Hershey and Ferrero are also weighing takeover bids.

However, only Kraft has so far made an offer. It bid 300 pence and 0.2589 new Kraft shares for each Cadbury share at the start of the month. It has now gone “hostile”, approaching shareholders directly, after the Cadbury board rejected its initial September approach.

Cadbury executives said Kraft’s offer was “derisory”, adding it “does not come remotely close to reflecting the true value of our company”.

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