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New bidders sought for United Biscuits

19-Nov-2010

New owners are being sought for United Biscuits after the private equity owners of the firm ended exclusive talks with Chinese food giant Bright Food Group, opening the field to new bidders

The news is reported to open up a possible £2 billion ($3.2 billion) sale.

It is speculated to that U.S. food groups Kraft, Campbell Soup Co and Kellogg's, which all looked at United Biscuits before Chinese food group Bright Food entered exclusive talks, are likely to be invited back into the process after the with Shanghai-based group failed to come through with a formal offer.

US investment firm Blackstone and French buyout specialist PAI Partners, which have co-owned United Biscuits since 2006, are now opening up talks to other potential bidders, according to The Times.

Blackstone and PAI considered a sale of the business last summer, however the Chinese state-backed, Bright Food pre-empted an auction by offering up to 2.5 billion pounds for exclusive talks. However talks crumbled when Bright Food failed to match its high initial offer, a source said.

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