Chinese in talks to buy United Biscuits: report
Chinese company Bright Food is in exclusive talks to buy British-based firm United Biscuits for up to 2.5 billion pounds (2.93 billion euros, 3.96 billion dollars), The Sunday Times reported.
Shanghai-based Bright Food has pre-empted a planned auction to try and get its hands on the group whose brands include McVitie's Digestive, Penguin and BN biscuits.
The Sunday Times said China's assault was a blow to several western food groups hoping to acquire United Biscuits, including America's Campbell Soup.
United Biscuits is already in foreign hands, having been bought by Blackstone and PAI, private equity companies from the United States and France respectively, for 1.6 billion pounds four years ago.
United is the biggest biscuit maker in Britain, employing 7,000 staff and generating profits of 223 million pounds on sales of 1.3 billion pounds last year, the paper said.
© 2010 AFP