September 9, 2009

Kraft says it will pursue Cadbury

Kraft Food Inc. Chief Executive Officer Irene Rosenfeld said Wednesday that Kraft would continue to pursue Cadbury PLC, the British confectionery.

We are now ready to look ahead and take the next step. Cadbury would be a terrific next step, Rosenfeld said at an investor conference in Boston.

The Chicago Tribune reported that Rosenfeld said Kraft was near the completion of a three-year turnaround plan, which pointed the world's second largest food packager toward sustainable, profitable growth.

Part of that growth is pursuit of Cadbury, which quickly rejected a recent bid from Kraft valued at $16.7 billion.

Cadbury shares have climbed with news of Kraft's interest, while Kraft shares have dropped on fear the company could pay too much for the world's second largest confectionery.

Rosenfeld countered the concern, saying Kraft would be quite disciplined in its offers for Cadbury.

In addition, We would truly like to negotiate a combination on a friendly basis, she said.