High-quality foods and simple meals manufacturer,
Campbell Soup Company
) has successfully sold its European simple meals business to a
private Equity firm, CVC Capital Partners. The latter has paid
400 million euros ($542 million) for Campbell's select sauces,
soups and simple meals in Europe.
Campbell and CVC Capital agreed to the deal on Oct 1, following
negotiations made on Aug 12. The sale deal includes Campbell's
European sauces, soups and simple meals brands, namely Erasco in
Germany, Liebig and Royco in France, Blå Band in Sweden and Devos
Lemmens and Royco in Belgium. The 4 production plants of the
company located in France (Le Pontet), Sweden (Karpalund),
Belgium (Puurs) and Germany (Lubeck) also form a part of the
Additionally, the Camden, NJ-based manufacturer made it clear
that the transaction does not involve the company's export
business of Pepperidge Farm products throughout Europe and its
businesses in the U.K., the Middle East as well as Africa.
Further, Denmark-based Kelsen Group A/S, which was recently
acquired by Campbell Soup, will continue with its regular
This divestment is the company's latest effort to move away from
its troubled canned soup business and enhance its presence in the
packaged fresh food market. The company intends to use the
proceeds from the sale to lower its debt burden and meet other
general capital requirements.
The operations that are to be offloaded generated annual revenue
of about $530 million in fiscal 2012.
Allen & Overy LLP acted as the financial advisor to Campbell
Soup while CVC Capital had Leopold Capital Partners,
), Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP and Ernst & Young
as its financial advisors.
Campbell Soup, which currently carries a Zacks Rank #5 (Strong
Sell), intends to boost its top line and increase returns on
investment through strategic measures. During fiscal 2012, the
company made significant progress in this direction, including
stabilization of the North American soup and simple meal
business, overseas expansion and growth of healthy beverages and
baked snacks businesses.
We believe that Campbell Soup's prudent investment and
strategic initiatives toward product innovation and brand
building will strengthen its customer base and profitability.
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