EC scrutinises Unilever’s acquisition of Sara Lee

The number and breadth of brands involved in Unilever’s acquisition of Sara Lee’s Personal Care and European Laundry business has sparked a market by market analysis by the European Commission (EC).

Under the terms of the £1.275bn offer (£;1.16bn at the time in September), Unilever will acquire a portfolio of more than 90 brands, spanning several categories in 19 European countries. These include Radox, Brylcreem and Sanex.

The EC says it needs “more time” to determine the full implications of the deal from a competition perspective on particular European markets.
Unilever says it “welcomes the opportunity to engage more fully with the competition authorities”. The process will balance market interest with the company’s desire to maximise opportunities from the acquisition, says the company.

Latest from Marketing Week

Influencers, consultancies and the recruitment crisis: The key topics of conversation at Cannes Lions

cannes lions

Cannes Lions 2018: Marketers turned out in force to advertising’s biggest annual event. But away from the usual talk of purpose and creativity, some big issues such as the recruitment crisis, how advertising responds to the #MeToo movement and cleaning up the influencer marketing space were discussed.


Access Marketing Week’s wealth of insight, analysis and opinion that will help you do your job better.

Register and receive the best content from the only UK title 100% dedicated to serving marketers' needs.

We’ll ask you just a few questions about what you do and where you work. The more we know about our visitors, the better and more relevant content we can provide for them. And, yes, knowing our audience better helps us find commercial partners too. Don't worry, we won't share your information with other parties, unless you give us permission to do so.

Register now


Our award winning editorial team (PPA Digital Brand of the Year) ask the big questions about the biggest issues on everything from strategy through to execution to help you navigate the fast moving modern marketing landscape.


From the opportunities and challenges of emerging technology to the need for greater effectiveness, from the challenge of measurement to building a marketing team fit for the future, we are your guide.


Information, inspiration and advice from the marketing world and beyond that will help you develop as a marketer and as a leader.

Having problems?

Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3703 or email

If you are looking for our Jobs site, please click here