Investor takes €5bn slice of Cadbury maker
Activist investor William Ackman has built a stake worth about $5.5 billion (€5bn) in Mondelez International, the maker of Cadbury chocolate and Oreo cookies, in what is seen as an attempt to push the company to boost earnings or sell itself.
Mondelez has already taken steps to boost its operational performance, including shutting factories and shedding businesses. The company has also set a share buyback of up to $13.7bn. But analysts said Ackman probably wants more.
"We suspect Mr Ackman's primary goal is to have Mondelez sold," JP Morgan analyst Ken Goldman wrote in a note.
A slowdown in growth for the global packaged food sector has sparked a wave of consolidation as companies try to cut costs, boost efficiency and gain scale.
However, Mondelez's shares - which initially jumped on news that Ackman's Pershing Square Capital would become the company's biggest shareholder - were up less than 1pc in early trading amid doubts about whether a buyer could be found.
At the current share price of around $46.40, Mondelez is valued at about $80bn.