McCormick moves on from Premier Foods

by Keith Nunes
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Premier Foods products and brands
Premier Foods manufactures sweet goods, cooking sauces, flavors and seasonings, and soups.

SPARKS, MD. — McCormick & Co., Inc., said it will not make an offer to acquire Premier Foods P.L.C., St. Albans, the United Kingdom, a manufacturer of sweet goods, cooking sauces, flavors and seasonings, and soups.

“McCormick has completed its due diligence review of Premier Foods, which was conducted with the management of Premier Foods in an open and collaborative spirit,” the company said. “McCormick has, after careful consideration, concluded that it would not be able to propose a price that would be recommended by the board of Premier Foods while also delivering appropriate returns for McCormick shareholders. Accordingly, McCormick has withdrawn its proposal to acquire Premier Foods.”

McCormick’s management has been in talks to acquire Premier Foods for the past few months. In February, the spice maker offered to acquire Premier Foods for 52 pence per share. That offer was rejected and on March 14 McCormick increased its bid to 60 pence per share. The March 14 offer was subsequently rejected, with Premier’s management stating that the proposal significantly undervalues its business.

On March 30, McCormick increased its bid to 65 pence per share, which valued Premier Foods at £1.51 billion ($2.17 billion) and represented a 106% premium to the pre-announcement Premier share price of 31.5 pence. At this stage both companies entered into talks to discuss the proposed acquisition that eventually led to McCormick & Co. withdrawing its offer to acquire the company.

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