Campbell Soup Company (NYSE:CPB) announced today that it is in final and exclusive negotiations for the potential sale of its business in Europe to CVC Capital Partners (CVC), a leading global private equity firm. CVC has made a firm offer to purchase the business. The proposed transaction includes Campbell’s national brands of soups, sauces and simple meals, including Liebig and Royco in France , Erasco in Germany , Blå Band in Sweden and Devos Lemmens and Royco in Belgium . The proposal also includes the sale of four plants in Puurs, Belgium; Le Pontet, France; Lubeck, Germany; and Karpalund, Sweden.
The proposed transaction does not include the export of Pepperidge Farm products throughout Europe or Campbell’s products in the United Kingdom or the Middle East or Africa. It also does not include Kelsen Group, which will continue its operations in Denmark and the export of its products to countries in Europe and throughout the world.
Campbell will conduct an information and consultation process with its European and local works councils in relation to the proposed transaction, in accordance with applicable laws. Campbell has the option to cause the parties to execute a binding share purchase agreement after the conclusion of the consultation process. The proposed transaction is subject to clearance by the relevant European competition law authorities.
In fiscal 2012, the Campbell businesses included in the proposed transaction generated annual net sales of approximately $530 million.Campbell anticipates that the proposed sale would be completed in the first quarter of its fiscal 2014. Campbell is being advised by Allen & Overy LLP. CVC is being advised by Leopold Capital Partners, Barclays, Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP and Ernst & Young. About Campbell Soup Company Campbell Soup Company is a manufacturer and marketer of high-quality foods and simple meals, including soup and sauces, snacks and healthy beverages. Founded in 1869, the company has a portfolio of market-leading brands, including “Campbell’s,” “Pepperidge Farm,” “Arnott’s,” “V8,” “Bolthouse Farms,” “Plum Organics” and “Kjeldsens.” Through its corporate social responsibility program, the company strives to make a positive impact in the workplace, in the marketplace and in the communities in which it operates. Campbell is a member of the Standard & Poor's 500 and the Dow Jones Sustainability Indexes. For more information, visit www.campbellsoupcompany.com or follow company news on Twitter via @CampbellSoupCo. Forward-Looking Statements This release contains "forward-looking statements." Forward-looking statements can be identified by words such as "anticipates," "intends," "plans," "believes," "estimates," "expects" and similar references to future periods. Examples of forward-looking statements include, but are not limited to, statements we make on the expected impact of the potential transaction with CVC Capital Partners. Forward-looking statements are based on our current expectations and assumptions regarding our business, our industry and other future conditions. Forward-looking statements are subject to inherent uncertainties, risks and changes in circumstances that are difficult to predict. Our actual results may differ materially from those contemplated by the forward-looking statements. Important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those in the forward-looking statements include our ability to realize the anticipated benefits from the potential transaction with CVC Capital Partners and the other factors described in the company's most recent Form 10-K and subsequent SEC filings. We undertake no obligation to update these statements to reflect new information or future events.
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