Kipling cake firm Premier Foods gets new bid approach – BBC News

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US spices and herbs manufacturer McCormick has increased its offer for UK food manufacturer Premier Foods to 65 p a share.

Premier, the maker of Mr Kipling cakes and Bisto gravy, exposed last week that it had already repudiated two bids from McCormick.

McCormick is chiefly known for its Schwartz spices and Lawry’s spices.

It first made a bid of 52p a share last month and then raised it to 60 p a share on 14 March.

Premier said the previous bids “significantly undervalued” the company, but has not yet publicly commented on the latest offer.

Also last week, Japanese noodle manufacturer Nissin Foods agreed to buy a 17.27% stake in Premier Foods .

Nissin, which Premier describes as a “long-term shareholder”, is expected to take a seat on the Premier board.

Overseas markets

Premier used to be one of the UK’s biggest food groups, but went unstuck when it expanded too fast, loading itself with debt.

It has since sold off its Hovis bread business to the US-based Gores group, rebuilt its 20 m production line at its Mr Kipling bakery in Barnsley and pushed through a 1.1 bn refinancing package, which included a 353 m rights issue.

It still owns a range of household UK brands, such as Ambrosia rice pudding, Oxo stock cubes and Batchelors soups.

Premier is increasing its international operations following its co-operation is being dealt with Nissin that allows Premier to distribute its produced in the UK, while inducing its own products more widely available in key overseas markets.

Nissin invented the first instant noodles in 1958 and operates in 19 countries. Its products include Cup Noodles and Top Ramen.

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