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Kraft takeover of Cadbury: the terms

Robert Peston | 07:17 UK time, Tuesday, 19 January 2010

Agreement has been reached between Kraft and Cadbury on an £11.5bn takeover of the 200 year old British confectioner.

Cadbury chocolate barsAfter a six month battle, Cadbury's board has - in fraught negotiating overnight - accepted a bid price of 840p per share, valuing the business at £11.5bn.

This will consist of 500p in cash - meaning that Kraft is borrowing around £7bn to finance the deal - and the rest in Kraft shares.

Cadbury shareholders will also receive a dividend of 10p.

Bankers are working frantically to put the finishing touches to the paperwork. An announcement will be made by lunchtime - and possibly as early as 9am.

The increase in borrowings to finance the bid is designed to placate Kraft's biggest shareholder, Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway - which had said that it did not want Kraft issuing too many new shares, since it regarded these as under-priced.

However the increase in Kraft's debt to pay for Cadbury will doubtless worry its employees.

Kraft is likely to give a commitment to protect British jobs for some years in Somerdale and Bourneville. But there are bound to be job losses at Cadbury's Uxbridge head office.

Also, Cadbury employs just 5,600 in the UK and Ireland. The future of a further 40,000 staff outside the UK may be uncertain.

UPDATE 16:07:Few would argue that Britain's economic future depends on whether we make our own chocolates.

But in recent years overseas buyers have bought a far bigger chunk of the British economy than of other developed economies such as the US or Germany or France.

There was a time when British ministers took pride in that - because it brought superior managers to the UK.

And there was a conviction, which may have been wrong, that those who sold their stakes in British business would re-invest the proceeds here.

Today however there are growing fears that there will be a price for Britain from what some see as the surrender of control over our economic destiny.

So for example when Kraft is choosing to create jobs or make important investments, its instinct is likely to be to favour its home territory of the US rather than Britain.

And when Kraft has business to offer to suppliers or consultants, it may have a tendency to favour American firms.

In favouring its compatriots, Kraft would be doing only what comes naturally.

Which is why the ownership by foreign interests of so many British industries - from motor cars to steel to nuclear power and telecoms, among others - may in time reduce the productive capacity of the UK, and make us all a bit poorer.

Comments

Page 1 of 3

  • Comment number 1.

    I see Mandy's efforts to stave off the further erosion of the British asset base.
    Reap what you sow foul stewards of the realm
    Will the last person please turn off the lights

  • Comment number 2.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 3.

    Is there details in 'the terms' on the quality of the product?

    As a major consumer of Cadbury products, one would hope there is no dumbing down of the chocolate to the awful US candy type!!

  • Comment number 4.

    It seems people just don't learn. Kraft are BORROWING nearly two thirds of the money needed to buy Cadbury. It's obscene after what bankers and borrowers have done to us over the last few years.
    God help the Cadbury workers.
    I shall be boycotting ANY Kraft product as soon as the first Cadbury job is lost.

  • Comment number 5.

    So, we kiss goodbye to another significant chunk of British industry becoming ever more reliant on banking.

    As is mentioned, Kraft may well be overstreaching itself so watch-out workers, any promises made now should be consumed with a bucket of salt. Although nobody working at Cadbury's should worry too much about their jobs, I'm sure a McDonalds/KFC will be opening near them - they'll be sure to provide ample employment should Cadbury's be stripped from the UK.

    This is appalling, the spoils of the 'freemarket' are alive and well..... "British jobs for American workers", we're turning ourselves into a nation of slaves by those who run our pensions.

  • Comment number 6.

    Why the big fuss over whether it's 'British' or not? No plc is really, and the government has courted overseas interest and is obsessed with globalisation, regardless of how the UK fares on a global market.

    With the devaluation in sterling that Gordon has caused while propping up the house price bubble and safeguarding his idols' bonuses, I suspect further UK-listed companies may be snapped up in due course...

  • Comment number 7.

    Isnt it a bit rich to get all dewy-eyed about the loss af a "Great British Iconic Company" when getting on for 90% of its workforce is overseas. Didnt it stop being British a long time ago and is as international as its predator?

  • Comment number 8.

    That was it, Robert. Since your last night "and on that bombshell" report. What has been nagging at me. Hostilities ceased. Friendly talks suddenly.
    Joseph Heller. 1974 book - "Something Happened". Great read. Joe Heller! Catch 22's author. Something HAS happened.
    We can wait. To find out what. We are Borg! Well - sort of! lol
    Subject: computer says no
    Anagram: Sun copy maestro
    Hmm

  • Comment number 9.

    What a tragedy for UK business, Cadbury's employees and its customers.

    A well run growing company in a solid market sector is to be taken over by a lacklustre US conglomerate. Cadburys management will now be involved in years of internal politics instead of concentrating on its business, and worst of all it is all funded by reckless amounts of debt - clearly Kraft have learned nothing at all from the credit crunch.

    Heaven help us if they start making US style 'candy' instead of proper chocolate, and what does someone across the Atlantic care about UK jobs?

    And it seems to me a large part of it seems to have been driven by a few huge egos on the Kraft board, who simply would not drop their bid, even if meant over-paying and going into massive debt to do so.

    And will we ever learn that the casino economy is not the way forward for the UK? What we need is companies just like Cadburys - to make profit, pay dividends, employ people, expand in developing markets, develop manufacture and sell popular products...

    The Germans and the Swiss would never allow this to happen to their iconic brands. That is perhaps why they will come out of this crisis richer than the UK.

  • Comment number 10.

    It makes me feel sick, they're having to BORROW over 60% of the money to buy Cadburys! Borrow from who? - Its all just numbers on a computer screen, i assume Kraft aren't shipping pallets of cash over to the UK?

    And NO, its not just another British company, its a historic British brand. There's somthing wrong when all these people act like losing a company like this doesn't matter.

    The UK is becoming a joke "let all in and take what they want" country.

    Comment 9. SuperJulianR (above) puts it perfectly...

  • Comment number 11.

    It's a shame that another British institution is left to go, because of the pack of greedy City types, for money, not those for good chocolate.
    Cadbury chocolate was rubbish but American chocolate is worse than dog mess.I won't be buying any of it.
    So I suppose the shareholders will be happy but I feel sorry for the workers-these takeover deals are NEVER about people or holistic ideas anyway. money money money.

  • Comment number 12.

    Lately, I've been extoling the virtues of making banks buy the right to be "too big to fail" from us voters. Perhaps we could apply the same principle to all big businesses - make them buy (from us) the right to be big enough to be intimidating. The more they pay, the bigger they can be! How much can Kraft afford?

  • Comment number 13.

    #4 mick neal

    Well, you may aswell start now.... Kraft, as a corporation, are about profits at all costs and not welfare. We should assume that it's British jobs for American shareholders - the jobs will go elsewhere due to the 7 billion in funding and whatever the M&A (don't know which banks have handled this) costs are.

  • Comment number 14.

    #7 GrumpyofEssex

    The still significant numbers of UK workers I think value their jobs and the contributions in tax from both the company and the workers are very important at the moment.

    Perhaps we shouldn't get dewey eyed about it but we should feel pretty angry that another chunk of British industry is sold off.

  • Comment number 15.

    #10

    According to reports yesterday the lenders include the taxpayer owned bank RBS and Barclays although the latter hasn't been confirmed.

    What this tells us is that leopards don't change their spots and that given the Govt isn't using it's influence on RBS to prevent their involvement then it must tacitly approve of the deal.

  • Comment number 16.

    As the "Official Treat Provider" of the London 2012 Olympics, may i quote from the Cadbury website page for 2012:

    "Cadbury is an iconic British brand and British company. We are proud part of the fabric of British society, its heritage and its future. People love our products, have affection for our company and for what it stands."

    http://www.cadbury.com/OURCOMPANY/LONDON2012/Pages/london2012.aspx

    Looks like they might have to think that over...

  • Comment number 17.

    A takeover financed by debt - is this sensible?

    You would think that as the present depression has been caused by the debt boom, some efforts would be made to reduce it.

    But no, they throw more logs on the fire to put it out.

  • Comment number 18.

    What are the implications for the Treasury in loss of Corporation and other Taxes?

  • Comment number 19.

    Oh well, at least it's not Hersey. Their chocolate tastes of sick :-) (In my humble opinion moderators!)

    Seriously, a sad day. More industry lost to the financiers....

  • Comment number 20.

    7. At 08:40am on 19 Jan 2010, GrumpyofEssex wrote:
    Isnt it a bit rich to get all dewy-eyed about the loss af a "Great British Iconic Company" when getting on for 90% of its workforce is overseas. Didnt it stop being British a long time ago and is as international as its predator?

    Exactly. At least we still have banks, oil companies, drug companies and arms manufacturers. We should look on the bright side.
    Who needs chocolate ? Nuts. Whole hazlenuts, I say

  • Comment number 21.

    The UK has for many years been seen by foreign investors as a soft touch in terms of foreign raiders being able to buy virtually any British business. Despite the politician's rhetoric, the consummate ease for foreign concerns to purchase and dissect UK business is not generally reciprocated overseas in most countries - in terms of major shareholdings in large companies. This has a lot to do with the big banks and to whom they will apply their own leverage to buy 'internationally'.

    For this reason some purchases are now regarded as too big for the UK plc - so it’s not all a level playing field, also in terms of bank sleaze behind all of this.

    Is there a case for the UK government putting e.g. a 49% foreign ownership restriction on the UK's largest and most sensitive businesses as being large and significant employers or as strategically important to the UK? I am convinced that there is.

    We hear politicians like Mandelson whimpering in the background but lacking the ability, conscience, resolve knowledge or commitment to UK plc to do anything about the likely sale of Cadbury's. When politicians argue that to bring in such measures to protect Uk businesses from vulturisation amounts to 'protectionism'- then look around - for those of us who have lived and worked overseas we know just how difficult it can be (and has been for the last 20 -30 years) for most British businesses to go into a foreign country and do anything - never mind try and buy a complete business in its home country. - this is virtually impossible for UK investors to achieve in some countries as the home countries 'ring fence' their own best businesses and or drag UK companies into a struggle to achieve any kind of effective competition.

    I don't hear of any businesses or countries refusing to do business with e.g. China, USA or Venezuela because they offer first rate protectionism for their home based and grown businesses.

    The other issue is that larger UK companies that were to become restricted on foreign ownership controls (a light touch in terms of regulation by no of shares/ employees/ £’s invested value) could be rewarded with a lower rate of corporation tax and other incentives reflecting their value to the British economy.

    It's not rocket science - its only our corrupt sleazing whimpering bung sucking spineless MP's that prevent this from happening and the UK getting on its feet - primarily in terms of manufacturing.

    If Britain is to recover - we're going to have to shake things up and rattle some cages and be prepared to confront the international trade bureaucracy that mires our country and to which our politicians regard as their scared bureaucracy which they can all hide behind to allow them to continue their uselessness, cowardice and inertia.

    Mandelson is a good example of this behaviour.

  • Comment number 22.

    Now that it's happened, as STANILIC said in an earlier thread, "if ever there was evidence to suggest that Big Business and Big Government Co-Operate! to screw the little people; this is it!"

    As you say, Robert, the future for a further 40,000 Cadbury staff outside the UK "maybe" uncertain, is going to be one of the understatements of the year!

    The recent post about Man Utd and their debt "difficulties" is an obvious parallel. Taking on large amounts of debt when one of the quite distinct possible economic outcomes, in the near future, is some serious deflation isn't very sensible either.

    Had a look in my kitchen cupboards last night. We have NO Kraft branded products in my house. When I asked my wife how come? She said she used to buy their salad dressing, but stopped a few years ago when I complained how foul it tasted. I can't imagine how but "all sweet and yucky" were my (poor?) choice of words, she insists. (Made me feel awful, that I had made my wife feel I was somehow blaming her for buying Kraft's poor product. I Must be guilty!?)

  • Comment number 23.

    Well ill do my annual cream egg test this year and next year I susspct they will be a LOT smaller next year.

    I have an original cream egg egg cup from their launch and every few years the eggs srink, they already rattle about in the egg cup. I wonder how long before I can get 2 in there?

  • Comment number 24.

    The previous comments have emphasised the main points I wanted to raise. Who exactly is for this deal (?) - by the looks of it, not the British public, who see another 'British Institution' swallowed up and most likely disappear. But I think it's all that goes with the Cadbury name that will be truely lost - the history, the hard work of previous generations and families, the flavours and products of Cadbury (and the TV ads that promoted them - Frank Muir 'Everyones a fruit & nutcase....etc') that hitherto, we have all grown up with and remember fondly. This is a deal by Kraft to take over a competitor and to ease it out of the market place, along with Cadbury products, thereby opening up the market to Kraft - not to add to it's portfolio of products to improve and increase its customer base. Borrowed finance to achieve a short term objective.. so much for a global economy that benefits us all! Good bye Cadbury!

  • Comment number 25.

    I wonder when the dust settles down wheather it will be Kraft or its subsidary that will own the debt?

    We can look forward to no tax revinew for many years to come from this take over.

    Remember Boots and how much tax it paid pre and after its take over? All due to the debt mountain forced onto it when but the buyers!

  • Comment number 26.

    #11, never mind the greedy "City types" selling out, think of the greedy Cadbury clan that took the company into public ownership in the first place.

  • Comment number 27.

    Has QE started runaway inflation.... 2.9% last month and thats before the VAT rate in Jan and Tax risies in Apr!

  • Comment number 28.

    Robert, you;ve got and put an extra 'e' in Bournville. Or have the Americans renamed it without telling us??

  • Comment number 29.

    There was no reason for Cadbury to sell its self at all. Not a failing Company but the second largest confectioner in the World.

    Greedy Executives, Senior Managers, and Shareholders have sold out to a company drowning in debt.

    Bourneville will be shut within 5 years and production moved to Eastern Europe or US.

    P&O Ports - Dubai
    British Oxygen & ICI - Germany
    Pilkingtons - Japan
    BAA - Spain
    Abbey Nat. and other banks - Spain
    Entire Electricity
    Supply Industry - France or Germany
    Rowntrees - Switzerland
    British Steel - India
    Rover - China

    Soon British workers who have lost their jobs or have had their wages cut will not be able to afford these products and services produced by these companies.

    Disgusting effects of so called "Globalisation".
    The race to the bottom indeed.

  • Comment number 30.

    Dempster Are you really Billy Bragg ?

  • Comment number 31.

    #27 - So QE causes world oil prices to rise ? The MPC's more powerful than I thought. Caledonian Comment

  • Comment number 32.

    # 29. honestgradgrind

    "Bourneville will be shut within 5 years and production moved to Eastern Europe or US."

    So? Cadbury was already about to shut the Somerdale factory at Keynsham and relocate the work to Poland. If that's an "ethical employer", how much worse can Kraft be?

  • Comment number 33.

    Can someone please explain to me the contradictions in this article?
    Double Dip & Growth Upgrades all in one article!?http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/business/8464774.stm
    Also inflation is on the rise and he doesn't want countries (i assume he is including the UK) to exit stimulus packages!?

  • Comment number 34.

    #18. At 09:16am on 19 Jan 2010, smithap66 wrote:
    “What are the implications for the Treasury in loss of Corporation and other Taxes?”

    #25. At 09:47am on 19 Jan 2010, icewombat wrote:
    “We can look forward to no tax revinew for many years to come from this take over.”


    It is hard to accurately assess a company’s tax position from its GAAP accounts, but with that caveat, the tax note in the 2008 accounts would indicate that current tax in respect of continuing operations is payable as follows:

    UK tax: nil
    Overseas tax: £240m

    This compares to 2007 when they reported:

    UK tax: nil
    Overseas tax: £99m

    This split becomes a bit clearer when we examine the segmental reporting of profits for 2008:

    UK, Ireland, Middle East, Africa: £107m
    Europe: £44m
    Americas: £296m
    Asia Pacific: £106m

    We have to also consider so called “central costs” – these are the costs of running the business which are not considered directly allocable to any one business segment.

    In 2008, central costs were: £165m

    So, if we assume that:
    1. Cadbury makes some profit in Ireland, Middle East and Africa (so the £107m reported for that segment is not all UK profit);
    2. Quite a lot of the central costs are incurred in the UK (being HQ based costs); and
    3. Most of these costs are deductible for UK tax purposes (the report indicates that in 2008 only about £6m of the UK based costs were not deductible)

    then it becomes easier to understand how Cadbury doesn’t pay tax in the UK – simply because they don’t make any taxable profits here.

    They do make taxable profits overseas, but we (like the US and other jurisdictions) have a system that normally taxes overseas profits only when paid back to the UK, and then allows a credit for any foreign taxes paid against the UK tax due at that time.

    I suspect that the most likely changes to follow a Kraft acquisition would be reduction in central costs – this would result in lower UK deductions and an increase in UK corporation tax. It seems likely however that the acquisition would be structured to provide debt deductions in the UK that would eliminate any resulting taxable income. So, still no change in corporation tax paid by the UK entity.

    It is highly likely that there will be UK redundancies as a result of an acquisition (being the reduction in central costs), resulting in reduced UK income tax and NI receipts.

    There are more complex scenarios (it may be that Kraft will reorganise the way Cadbury’s overseas businesses are held, for example), but at its most basic level, Cadbury doesn’t pay much corporation tax in the UK and probably will continue not to.

    So, that’s a long winded way of saying that it seems unlikely that there are any implications for the Treasury in terms of a loss of Corporation tax.


    Some points to note:
    1. accounts only tell you about accounting results; and
    2. I pass no comment on what tax anyone should pay, whether this acquisition should happen or not, whether banks should be allowed to lend into this acquisition, whether Kraft is a “good” or “bad” company, whether Cadbury is a “good” or “bad” company or anything else you’d rather discuss.

  • Comment number 35.

    I know it's pedantic, but as it's my home town I've got to mention it. You've spelt Bournville incorrectly. No extra 'e' in the middle of it.

  • Comment number 36.

    #31

    Yes that's right.. QE raised expectations of economic growth and that in turn raised expectations of higher oil demand and as a consequence the oil price went up.

  • Comment number 37.

    # 20. At 09:26am on 19 Jan 2010, rvaucbns wrote:

    > At least we still have banks, oil companies, drug companies and
    > arms manufacturers.

    Yes, I wonder what attracts toxic firms to Britain?



  • Comment number 38.

    37. At 10:40am on 19 Jan 2010, Jacques Cartier wrote:
    Yes, I wonder what attracts toxic firms to Britain?

    Amenable politicians ?

  • Comment number 39.

    @ 29 honestgradgrind

    " P&O Ports - Dubai
    British Oxygen & ICI - Germany
    Pilkingtons - Japan
    BAA - Spain
    Abbey Nat. and other banks - Spain
    Entire Electricity
    Supply Industry - France or Germany
    Rowntrees - Switzerland
    British Steel - India
    Rover - China"

    ..and not forgetting Wedgwood.

    Probably it will continue in the same way and soon be:

    Wimbledon - China
    Shakespeare - Spain
    Dickens - Germany
    etc


    and every part of the culture of this country. Sherlock Holmes is now a Hollywood super action hero about as authentically English as McDonalds. All we can hope is that Waitrose begins manufacturing chocolate and creates new jobs in this country.

  • Comment number 40.

    21. At 09:34am on 19 Jan 2010, nautonier wrote:

    continued....

    Robert

    The Cadbury's debacle - What better evidence is there that our high Priests fail the UK repeatedly and that the Basel Committee supervision in terms of a fair playing field on bank involvement on international take-overs is inadequate?

    In the US - at least the US banks fly the flag and make their money available for US companies - under the 'supervision' of Congress and Senate - that surely cannot be said of British banking under the supevision of the Tri-partite regulation set up and ... Mandelson.

    British banks put e.g. billions? into Dubai - Are they making the same funds available for the expansion of British companies at home and overseas - I don't think so - international finances for major international purchases is skewed against the UK - for a number of reasons - weak government leaves the UK exposed to every kind of raid and abuse.

    In the Cadbury's deal will the banks be British banks? - I doubt it - that again is another risk for the UK (assuming our UK banks should have a preference for supporting British industry?)

  • Comment number 41.

    40. At 10:52am on 19 Jan 2010, you wrote:

    21. At 09:34am on 19 Jan 2010, nautonier wrote:

    continued....

    Mandelson can block the Cadbury's deal through the EU by arguing that the deal would create a transatlantic chocolate giant in the US - to the disadvantage of a EU member state(s) on 'competition' grounds

    Mandelson can simply intervene and say that a maximum of 49% of the company is for sale to a foreign buyer because of the trade imbalance and because of the strategic UK interest - and change UK law by emergency legisaltion by way of an emergency sitting of Parliament

    Will Mandelson now act and save Cadbury's from foreign asset strippers and save British jobs for British workers - or will he cower behind his cowardly, corrupt, Gordo government bureacracy - and do nothing!

    Stagnate or buzz!

  • Comment number 42.

    # 40. At 10:52am on 19 Jan 2010, nautonier wrote:

    > In the Cadbury's deal will the banks be British banks? - I doubt it - that again
    > is another risk for the UK (assuming our UK banks should have a preference
    > for supporting British industry?)

    The City only cares about money, not Britain. It wouldn't care if Britain
    went to hell in a handbasket, as long things are well in the City.

    As it happens, the Internet can distribute "the City" (and parliament) over
    the whole country, if we get the "incentives" right.

  • Comment number 43.

    4. At 08:31am on 19 Jan 2010, mick neal wrote:
    It seems people just don't learn. Kraft are BORROWING nearly two thirds of the money needed to buy Cadbury.

    You could say they're borrowing all of it, since the other 30% of the purchase is funded with newly-minted shares, which have to be "financed" through improved financial performance going forward in order not to dilute the holdings of current Kraft shareholders.

  • Comment number 44.

    well well well it that not a fair trade logo on the cadbrys wrapper? hope kraft choke when thay start tasting!!!!!

  • Comment number 45.

    One of Cadbury's great strengths has been its commitment to ethical and social responsibility, and I was particularly pleased with its move to Fairtrade. Will this takeover mean the the loss of this in favour of pure profit? What a sad day for Britain, British manufacturing and the move to a fairer world.

  • Comment number 46.

    That's true I think - but I also think that there should be focus on these issues as ignored completely by all political parties

    Mandelson, Brown and Darling et al still, I understand, have a enough sovereign power to block this asset stripping raid on Cadbury's - Will any of them lift a finger to do anything so as to intervene and act to maintain British jobs for British workers and a secure British based future for Cadbury's and the continued existence of this historic national treasure?

  • Comment number 47.

    #22. spareusthelies wrote:

    "Had a look in my kitchen cupboards last night. We have NO Kraft branded products in my house. When I asked my wife how come? She said she used to buy their salad dressing, but stopped a few years ago when I complained how foul it tasted."

    Good God... have I fallen through a time warp into the 1950s? :-)

  • Comment number 48.

    I find these buy-outs bizarre.

    It's a bit like I go to someone and say "I want to buy your house" and then offer them so much money they can't refuse but on condition that they stay as the tenant. But to pay for it, I borrow all the money, and then charge them a huge rent in order to repay the debt. I win, they lose. So why on earth does anyone (especially these company boards) go along with it?

    I just hope that Kraft decide that Green and Blacks doesn't fit with their "sickly sweet" product range and sell it back into (ethical?) independence.

  • Comment number 49.

    # 45. Ray King :
    "One of Cadbury's great strengths has been its commitment to ethical and social responsibility"

    Which is why it was closing Somerdale at Keynsham and moving production to Poland? Oh, I see, when you said "responsibility", you weren't referring to its British workforce...

  • Comment number 50.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 51.

    Good deal, excellent job by Cadbury management. Should benefit my pension scheme.

    We all get misty eyed about "great British brands" sorry but it is a global economy, and this is a public company. Cadbury's shares are bought and sold every day by people who are not British. Also there are plenty of examples of UK companies buying up US companies even if US politicians often deride the purchases in Xenophobic terms.

    Of course if it all goes wrong maybe some British company can buy Cadbury's back on the cheap. Maybe that will make the doubters happy

  • Comment number 52.

    #29 - you can add HP Sauce to that list as well. It's made in Holland I believe, but it still has a picture of our Parliament on it, to make it look as if it's British.

    And Clarks (shoes) who now manufacture in E. Europe, and also Dyson.

    I don't know how long we can carry on shutting down our factories so that people in other countries, with lower wages, can keep making stuff and exporting it back to us, but my bet is not very long. Surely, with globalisation, there will come a point where the people who make the goods can't afford to buy them themselves (because their wages are too low), and we can't afford to buy them either, because we don't have jobs. So the end result for globalisation is that no-one will make anything because there will be no-one to sell it to! Except maybe for a handful of mega-rich people, and this won't sustain industry. Hmm.

  • Comment number 53.

    What a disgrace, another British institution sold down the river. Shame on you Cadbury's for letting this happen. Once again the bosses of this country have sold there sole for money. Pure greed. Give it two years and there will be no Cadbury site in Birmingham, just like Rover, LDV, etc,etc. It's a shambles. 11.5m is a paltry sum to pay.

  • Comment number 54.

    I'm afraid Justin 150, you epitomise what this country is all about, money,money,money.

  • Comment number 55.

    When you think about this whole episode it's just another elaborate sell off to the private sector.

    RBS gambles - and makes the biggest loss in history

    Tax payer bails it out, to ensure survival.

    RBS continues as normal, funding the deal to buy Cadbury's.

    Deal goes through, RBS earns a nice wedge off the deal and then can claim 'profit' and can continue to pay bonuses.

    Despite the fact that the bank wouldn't have been there if it weren't for UK taxpayer, and that Kraft wouldn't be in a position to bid if the US taxpayer hadn't just bailed out the entire finance industry over there - all that is simply forgotten and the media try to play a 'nationalism game' with something that wasn't really 'ours' anyway.

    Still, it distracts us all nicely from the entity which is 'ours' (RBS) which will be claiming this deal is 'good for the Economy and tax payer' soon.

    ....of course that's because bankers are thick and don't realise that when Kraft take over Cadbury there will be redundancies - and which mug picks up the tab for that? - THE TAXPAYER AGAIN.

    Still, hwy should they care? They are busy counting their 'profits' whilst not actually being able to explain where they came from.

    Having something in your posession which you cannot explain how it got there sounds like theft to me.

    Why let morals get in the way of making money though eh? This is what we're taught - next step, screwing old people over for their winter bill benefits or simply mugging people in the street.

    You have a briefcase, the mugger has a knife - but what is the difference really?

  • Comment number 56.

    Mr Peston,

    I would have expected at least a paragraph or two regarding the CPI figures out today.

    Any comment on the fiscal lunacy from Brown that got us to this place - or has the bunker issued instructions from the dear leader to the BBC?

  • Comment number 57.

    46. At 11:22am on 19 Jan 2010, nautonier wrote:

    "Mandelson, Brown and Darling et al still, I understand, have a enough sovereign power to block this asset stripping raid on Cadbury's - Will any of them lift a finger to do anything so as to intervene and act to maintain British jobs for British workers and a secure British based future for Cadbury's and the continued existence of this historic national treasure?"

    I don't think they can without creating a protectionist trade war. This is the consequence of free trade agreements - for better or for worse.

  • Comment number 58.

    51. At 11:45am on 19 Jan 2010, Justin150 wrote:

    "Good deal, excellent job by Cadbury management. Should benefit my pension scheme."

    ...which will hopefully offset the losses you made on RBS, Lloyds and the rest of the finance sector......

    ...or are you still believing you'll come out making a profit? - the longer this goes on, the less likely that wil be the case...

  • Comment number 59.

    The point about Cadburys being a global company already is well made, but you need to consider a slightly wider picture: The importance of brand and technical know how.

    We all associate with Cadburys, and it means something to us. It also then is part of what makes us British. This sounds wierd, but of you try and define a country, you think of it's unique products, countryside & artictecture. We are fast loosing things that differentiate us, and are becoming a bland country full of macdonalds.

    A US company will put in US managers, buy US machinery, use US schemes where it can. We will loose the ability to make machines for chocolate forming & manufacture, and the actual learnt experience of running a large chocolate company.

    And so it goes. Basically when these things happen there is short term gain, and long term loss. Now where have we seen that before?

  • Comment number 60.

    52. At 11:49am on 19 Jan 2010, LippyLippo wrote:

    "I don't know how long we can carry on shutting down our factories so that people in other countries, with lower wages, can keep making stuff and exporting it back to us, but my bet is not very long. Surely, with globalisation, there will come a point where the people who make the goods can't afford to buy them themselves (because their wages are too low), and we can't afford to buy them either, because we don't have jobs. So the end result for globalisation is that no-one will make anything because there will be no-one to sell it to! Except maybe for a handful of mega-rich people, and this won't sustain industry. Hmm."

    A Marxist explanation for the continuing crisis of Capitalism - all achieved by looking at it logically (rather than trusting some joke Economist who thinks we will continue to expand indefinitely - defying the laws of reason)

    LippyLippo - unfortunately the result is often oppression - which allows you to pay nothing for the production and ensure that the handful of mega rich people maintain their lifestyles.

  • Comment number 61.

    51. At 11:45am on 19 Jan 2010, Justin150 wrote:

    Of course if it all goes wrong maybe some British company can buy Cadbury's back on the cheap. Maybe that will make the doubters happy

    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

    Will there even be anything to buy back in a couple of years time - your UK pension will be worth even less with the drip drip down the drain effect of this kind of raid on UK assets, as it can also trigger a sterling crisis down the line.

    Most foreign companies/investors lose heavily on investment in US based business and its the Americans who then usually buy back any remaining assets on the cheap - I can't think of any significantly valuable major UK businesses that have been sold to an overseas investor/business to be later sold back on the cheap to a UK business/investor - this is New Labour spin meister talk for doing nothing - this is precisely the argument and attitude that has undermined the UK almost now to the point of substantial economic failure in our national economy

  • Comment number 62.

    I don't understand why everyone is so het up about this.

    When did we begin to think that we had any say in how global corporations run their mergers and acquisitions?

    If we applied this fervour across the board, nobody would ever trade shares, buy companies etc. as public opinion would direct government policy to basically be the arbiter of whether any deal is "good for Britain".

  • Comment number 63.

    A very Sad day for Britain. Are government have sold us to the US. We are more and more doomed we need to bring business back to this country.

  • Comment number 64.

    54. At 11:56am on 19 Jan 2010, steven wrote:

    "I'm afraid Justin 150, you epitomise what this country is all about, money,money,money."

    What makes me laugh about this common attitude is that people mistakenly refer to it as 'aspiration' - which it isn't of course.

    Why? Well if your goal is to work hard until you 'reach a point where you no longer have to work' - then you are simply replacing the fundamental desire of every human with.....nothing.

    This leads to wastage, waste of time and resources as the 'achievers' sit around on their backsides doing very little productive.

    Is that really what aspiration is about?

    Justin 150 - I'm interested to know, is your goal to make yourself 'productively inert'?

    I'm sure you will use phrases like 'better my family' and guff like that - but they are just lies people tell themselves when they can't face the truth.
    Why do so many lottery workers return to work?

    Unfortunately it does appear that selfish greed inteferes with the logical mind - I guess that's just emotions talking.

    Are there any 'aspirational' people out there who would like to comment?

  • Comment number 65.

    In Britain we seem to hold open the door to any foreign raider. Now would the French do this? Mr Mandleson, you are full of sound and fury but signify nothing. Your government has failed the British people - we will be slaves yet.

  • Comment number 66.

    57. At 12:00pm on 19 Jan 2010, writingsonthewall wrote:

    46. At 11:22am on 19 Jan 2010, nautonier wrote:

    "Mandelson, Brown and Darling et al still, I understand, have a enough sovereign power to block this asset stripping raid on Cadbury's - Will any of them lift a finger to do anything so as to intervene and act to maintain British jobs for British workers and a secure British based future for Cadbury's and the continued existence of this historic national treasure?"

    I don't think they can without creating a protectionist trade war. This is the consequence of free trade agreements - for better or for worse.

    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

    There are clear competition issues here and countries like the US already practice covert protectionism but do it cleverly - 'Americanism' - and you need to have lived and worked in the USA to understand this.

    That's why we're in a mess because people only find reasons to do nothing - that's a probelm with the British psyche - most trade laws are bunkum and years out of date and are broken every day all around the world and there is a strong argument for 'principled protection' in terms of the UK's position.

  • Comment number 67.

    56. At 11:59am on 19 Jan 2010, Operation Overlord wrote:

    "I would have expected at least a paragraph or two regarding the CPI figures out today."

    yes very quiet on this scary number - does the surprise jump in inflation mean that the BoE will cut the stimuli early - or will they keep their finger on the trigger and risk Wiemar rather than Depression?

    ..now that's a decision I am glad I don't have to make today....

  • Comment number 68.

    62. At 12:07pm on 19 Jan 2010, Dave Harris wrote:

    "If we applied this fervour across the board, nobody would ever trade shares, buy companies etc. as public opinion would direct government policy to basically be the arbiter of whether any deal is "good for Britain"."

    ...and the problem would be.......?

    Are you saying the want of the individual to make money is more important than the needs of the majority to stay in work?

    mmmmmmm - so what happens when we all become 'shareholders' - who will be doing all the work? - monkeys?

    This is the unsutainable face of Capitalism, we can't all 'live off someone else' for a living - someone has to do the work.

  • Comment number 69.

    #56 Operation Overlord
    Robert has missed the inflation figures and the 'double dip' warning from the head of the IMF. Seems strange no blogs on either subject.
    Maybe he is leaving for Stephanie!?

  • Comment number 70.

    51. At 11:45am on 19 Jan 2010, Justin150 wrote:
    Good deal, excellent job by Cadbury management. Should benefit my pension scheme.

    Actually, Justin150 your pension fund wil have sold any stake in Cadbury the moment there was a suggestion of a takeover, for a price just over 790p per share. This is because their rules compel them to invest in less volatile equities. Hedge funds and arbitrageurs will have snapped up their shares, causing the rise in Cadbury's share price, and they are the ones who will have profited from this.

  • Comment number 71.

    "...and the problem would be.......?"

    And the problem would be that:

    1. It relies on politicians to make a judgement.
    2. It would cut growth and mean that the long term "need of the majority" for work will be compromised because the freedom of capital to move will be hampered.

  • Comment number 72.

    sorry make that below 600p per share!

  • Comment number 73.

    Robert,
    Can we please move on to a serious problem. Frankly Cadbury’s is a side show. Mars (a US company) has long provided into the UK market. Nestles (a Swiss company) has also long provided into the UK market. In fact Kraft, through Terry’s and Toblerone has also long provided into the UK chocolate market. They also make Kenco and Maxwell House coffee. I don’t think they are in the business of shooting themselves in the foot so they won’t be changing the taste of Cadbury products.

    As for the ‘British workers’, Cadbury is a global brand and most of their workers are not UK based. In fact this move could make the people on here calling for a fairer world very happy. Why pay British workers substantially more money than the people in Poland operating the same machinery? In fact a fairer world implies that the population of China and India should earn the same as the population of the UK or USA. Or should that in fact be the other way round, the UK worker should earn the same as the Indian worker?.

    Now the more serious problem that you should be covering instead of doing your masters bidding and distracting us with trivia in the confectionary world. What is happening within the actuary world? My understanding is that these companies were big buyers of bundled mortgages. It suited them that the income was over a protracted period just like the pension liability they had undertaken. Now these companies must have shed loads of toxic mortgages and I suspect that they are keeping their heads above water by filling the shortfall they are now experiencing with the new funds that arrive each month as people convert their pension into an actuary. This is rather like the state pension funding but without the ability to print/borrow money as required. Do you think my monthly pension payment is safe?

  • Comment number 74.

    66. At 12:13pm on 19 Jan 2010, nautonier

    I cannot disagree - the US are constantly applying 'clever' protectionism - but I suspect they get away with it becase they are 'the biggest customer in the world' (as well as the most violent and powerful).

    If we try that we will be stuffed - we can't go to war for recources on our own - we can only tag along.

    Sadly we're not learning from this as we have already sold off our Gas supplies, closed our coal industry, sold off most of our transportation providers and now we're selling off our chocolate.

    When sterling tanks Cadbury's chocolate will be an 'import' and therefore become very expensive.

    This way of life it unsustainable and leaves you prone to unexpected supply problems and fluctuations in exchange rates.

    This is the same reason I grow my own food - not just because it's fun - but so I am not going hungry for the next 10 years because all our imported food goes up by 50%!

    P.s. has anyone noticed that petrol stands at £1.15 a litre? - no wonder the roads are much quieter - how are all you driving commuters managing?
    Don't forget the oil price is very low because of the expected lack of demand - the only way is up!

  • Comment number 75.

    The UK due to all the manufacturing moving abroad is becoming a country build on a card castle….sooner rather than later it will collapse….. also we have just experienced one of the worst recessions in human history and it seems NO LESSONS have been learnt….Kraft is borrowing billions which would need to be repaid somehow! And the banks are more than happy to lend this money…what a total farce the whole thing.

  • Comment number 76.

    64. At 12:11pm on 19 Jan 2010, writingsonthewall worte:
    “Why? Well if your goal is to work hard until you 'reach a point where you no longer have to work' - then you are simply replacing the fundamental desire of every human with.....nothing.”

    Sorry WOTL this is rubbish. I retired at 50 having made enough to live on for the rest of my life. I have no desire whatever to go back to work. I enjoy gardening, swimming and just lazing about in the summer and in the winter I do a bit of diy and play the stock market for pennies. No, I always only worked to live, not live to work.

  • Comment number 77.

    73. At 12:28pm on 19 Jan 2010, Uphios wrote:

    Robert,
    Can we please move on to a serious problem. Frankly Cadbury’s is a side show. Mars (a US company) has long provided into the UK market. Nestles (a Swiss company) has also long provided into the UK market. In fact Kraft, through Terry’s and Toblerone has also long provided into the UK chocolate market. They also make Kenco and Maxwell House coffee. I don’t think they are in the business of shooting themselves in the foot so they won’t be changing the taste of Cadbury products.

    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

    Rubbish!

    Cadbury's is a strategic British interest and its not just about money and chocolate - its about product brand for UK plc - supply chains - retaining high level UK management positions for UK graduates etc etc etc

    We don't need a summary of Cadbury's operations thank you - We all know or have a good idea what Cadbury's is as a global brand - but it is British based and there are major competition isses being unaddressed here by incompetent politicians, business personnel and regulators.

    I see the non dom investment bankers et al with their fingers in the pie are quick to defend the vulturisation of UK plc so that Brown and Mandelson can some out with their own empty rhetoric without even 'lifting a finger'

  • Comment number 78.

    #73 wrote the following:

    .. As for the ‘British workers’, Cadbury is a global brand and most of their workers are not UK based. In fact this move could make the people on here calling for a fairer world very happy. Why pay British workers substantially more money than the people in Poland operating the same machinery? In fact a fairer world implies that the population of China and India should earn the same as the population of the UK or USA. Or should that in fact be the other way round, the UK worker should earn the same as the Indian worker?.

    Well put. Surely this is indeed where globalisation leads us? I think if you divide the wealth of the world by the number of inhabitants you get something like $1600 per year. This is fine for people in Africa and poorer countries, but disastrous for the high-wage economies of the Western world, Japan etc. Nobody would be able to buy anything except very basic foodstuffs and you can forget computers, cars, phones etc. So there would be no point in making anything and even the $1600 per year would start to come down. So we need to protect our ways of life by stopping the leaking away of jobs to third-world economies or our own lifestyles will come crashing down. It might not be fair, but otherwise we might as well all go and live in caves. Mind you at least they'd be mortgage-free...

  • Comment number 79.

    As soon as th deal was announced and the public outcry started to happen the value destruction started.

    Brands, especially food brands, are about trust. That's reflected in the goodwill element of the price Kraft have paid for Cadbury. Butthe ability for Kraft to retain the trust in the Cadbury brands that has been built up over more than 150 years, is severely compromised due to the change in ownership.

    No longer will that bar of Diary Milk taste quite so good.

    Read more here: http://bit.ly/880lDm

  • Comment number 80.

    We have to stop this. Our nation is being bought up by people with no interest in our future, our job are being taken by immigrants and our lives are being run by corporations who fill the pockets of policticians one way or another to buy the right to control our lives.

    The only hope is to vote them out and to vote with our wallets - I will not buy Kraft or Cadbury products again.

    And for "the Board" to accept this just shows the luduicrous business structures we are being forced to live with. These people are mere stewards of the company. They are driven by shareholders who have their own selfish intrests as priority - where in this equaition are the interests of society as a whole being considered?

    We need a total revamp of corporate structures and responsibilities.
    We need a total rewrite of the powers (and responsibilities) of executives.

  • Comment number 81.

    The world has gone insane. This is a disaster.

  • Comment number 82.

    I expect Kraft will treat Cadbury the same way as they did Terrys, i.e. move all production to eastern europe and oversight to the US.
    Also expect much greater use of GM corn products (its almost impossible to get any other kind in the US), and possibly a move away from "Fair Trade" (which has rules) to "fair deal" (which doesn't).

  • Comment number 83.

    Don't fret everyone!...

    'Brown issues warning to Kraft over Cadbury jobs'
    http://business.timesonline.co.uk/tol/business/industry_sectors/consumer_goods/article6993371.ece

    ...so their jobs are safe for AT MOST a few months more!

  • Comment number 84.

    As #55 says -

    Very simple. The City has been propped up with our money to a degree that can only invite stupefaction and rage. The rest of the world will note that the British banks now have an unlimited guarantee against failure. So they can borrow even cheaper although how happy the rest of the world will be in future to entrust anybody in the City with their money remains to be seen. They use this borrowed money - assume its ours unless they have found some new mugs outside the UK - to predate on the remaining British companies to create a 'deal'. Their lives begin and end with the 'deal' and their cut. Foist the entire debt on the unlucky target (BAA, Boots, Pilkingtons etc and you can bet Cadbury's next) - get paid on day 1 and take their profit and their bonus. On to the next target till there are none left then its off to a new and exciting arena in the Far East while we struggle with rising taxes and inflation while we pay off their gambling debts for a generation at least.

  • Comment number 85.

    @ Chris, comment 80:

    "And for "the Board" to accept this just shows the luduicrous business structures we are being forced to live with. These people are mere stewards of the company. They are driven by shareholders"

    This is the purpose of "the Board": to benefit shareholders by positioning the company where the shareholders will get best benefit.

  • Comment number 86.

    Am I the only only one who looks on in amazement at what is happening in the UK? Not only are we mortgaging our children's future to the neck, but we are also listening benignly to urgings to hike our personal spending to keep a lame duck government in power, and, coincidently ceed economic power to the other side of the globe. On top of all that we sell one of our few global businesses abroad - wait for the cuts and hang your head in shame!!

  • Comment number 87.

    Well done to Robert Peston for announcing this before it was announced.

    It's a shame that a company founded on looking after the welfare of its workforce has fallen victim to this unwelcome takeover. The benefits are all in Kraft's favour.

    Where's the Milk Tray Man when he's needed?

    "All because the lady likes processed cheese slices"? I don't think so.

  • Comment number 88.

    71. At 12:26pm on 19 Jan 2010, Dave Harris wrote:

    "And the problem would be that:

    1. It relies on politicians to make a judgement.
    2. It would cut growth and mean that the long term "need of the majority" for work will be compromised because the freedom of capital to move will be hampered."

    1 - and the judgement of politicans is better or worse than the judgement to of investors? Did the thousands of RBS and Lloyds investors make a 'good decision'? At least the Government was forced to take on it's stake - those investors volunteered their money! You need to try and divorce the state Capitalist model from the public model.

    2 - What is growth? It seems to me the idea and measurement of growth (GDP) is a nonesense. When you are quantifying your income on a system of money which has long lost it's tie to value, then you are simply stabbing in the dark.
    There is a great load of tosh talked about needing to work - but why are we creatingg industries, factories and a workforce to produce items that we don't actually need. Surely these people would contribute more to society if they weren't engaging in 'time wasting production'.

    For example, how many cars did GM build - all of which are now standing on their vast storage car parks. We used labour, resources and time to produce them but due to the inherent inability for Capitalism to keep it's scale (money) close to the reality (value) - nobody can afford to buy them anymore.

    You have told me lack of growth is a bad thing - but have you ever asked yourself why?

    Want to know a secret? The reason we're all told 'growth is good' is because the financial system uses it as a mechanism to take profits from the future based on that expectation of growth

    Like most things, it's not for your, or my benefit, it's for the benefit of those who are constantly living off the work we do. When the growth doesn't come then we hit a recession and it's those at the bottom who are expected pay for it.

  • Comment number 89.

    To mirror much of what has been said already..

    Shocking situation when a robust, independent UK plc who are in profit and clearly don't want takeover [from management downwards seemingly] are effectively forced to give all that they've achieved together and all that heritage up to the Yankee Dollar.

    Some of the stats/comments that are out there re Kraft's working methods are truly depressing: [from Unite's Website]

    "Kraft took over Terry's (in York) and within three years closed it. They took over a cheese company in Menorca and closed that down."

    and..

    "In the past 10 years, Kraft has sacked 60,000 workers to pay for other companies it has eaten up."

    What this means for British jobs and especially the unique setup in Birmingham/Bournville suggests that [..although we'll have all manner of glossy assurances to the contrary] the writing's on the wall for yet another British Institution.

  • Comment number 90.

    76. At 12:42pm on 19 Jan 2010, Uphios wrote:

    "Sorry WOTL this is rubbish. I retired at 50 having made enough to live on for the rest of my life. I have no desire whatever to go back to work. I enjoy gardening, swimming and just lazing about in the summer and in the winter I do a bit of diy and play the stock market for pennies. No, I always only worked to live, not live to work."

    It's not rubbish, in fact you prove my point for me:
    "I enjoy gardening" - which is work for some people
    "swimming " - physical excercise, to replace the physical excercise work used to provide you with.
    "I do a bit of diy " - is this not work in disguise?

    "No, I always only worked to live, not live to work."

    I beg to differ - all you are doing now is the 'work' which you most enjoy.
    I mean unless you're gardening and doing DIY with no end product - in which case you're just lazy and therefore not good for society (but I am certain this is not the case)

    The question everyone should be asking is why does this man continue to engage in productive activity when he could easily live off others? - I mean how can it be aspirational if he has reached the ultimate goal - but still can't sit around doing nothing.

  • Comment number 91.

    78. At 12:49pm on 19 Jan 2010, LippyLippo wrote:

    "Well put. Surely this is indeed where globalisation leads us? I think if you divide the wealth of the world by the number of inhabitants you get something like $1600 per year. This is fine for people in Africa and poorer countries, but disastrous for the high-wage economies of the Western world, Japan etc. Nobody would be able to buy anything except very basic foodstuffs and you can forget computers, cars, phones etc. So there would be no point in making anything and even the $1600 per year would start to come down. So we need to protect our ways of life by stopping the leaking away of jobs to third-world economies or our own lifestyles will come crashing down. It might not be fair, but otherwise we might as well all go and live in caves. Mind you at least they'd be mortgage-free..."

    Oh dear - the truth is out. We didn't get these lovely lifestyles in the west through hard work and genius - we get it because others go without.

    Capitalism ensures this stays the same, because as I have said before - you can't all live off someone else - somebody has to do the work at some point.

    Unfortunately your solution is not very humanitarian - I mean it's only one step away from genocide on those who have less so we can have more (because that's what trade barriers will do to the third world)

  • Comment number 92.

    The only consequence you Cadbury's fans need to consider is:

    When GM needed to make drastic cuts - which plants did they protect first?

    This is the consequence of selling off UK business to foreign ownership. Foreign owned companies will always look to close / reduce the home market last.

    As far as taxes and other money stuff goes - well it's pretty much the same. You only find out the true consequences when the chips are down.

  • Comment number 93.

    Recession over?

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/scotland/8467751.stm

    Didn't see this one coming did we?

    ...and there was supposedly a mystery about why they held on to customer deposits.

    When will the media and public learn - a business man will stand in the face of bankruptcy and scream everything is going to be OK. You can't blame them for being stubborn - but the consequence is a long....slow....decline..........which doesn't really fit into the media obsession with 'fast moving news' - hence their lack of interest in anything except a stock market crash.

  • Comment number 94.

    This is appalling. This is the stuff public unrest is made of. It would not be going too far to describe this abominable. Terrible.

  • Comment number 95.

    85. At 1:08pm on 19 Jan 2010, Dave Harris wrote:
    “This is the purpose of "the Board": to benefit shareholders by positioning the company where the shareholders will get best benefit.”

    Interestingly, the Companies Act 2006 introduced new words on this point.

    Now directors must:

    “act in the way he considers, in good faith, would be most likely to promote the success of the company for the benefit of its [shareholders] as a whole, and in doing so have regard (amongst other matters) to —
    (a) the likely consequences of any decision in the long term,
    (b) the interests of the company’s employees,
    (c) the need to foster the company’s business relationships with suppliers, customers and others,
    (d) the impact of the company’s operations on the community and the
    environment,
    (e) the desirability of the company maintaining a reputation for high standards of business conduct, and
    (f) the need to act fairly as between [shareholders] of the company.”

    The DTI has indicated that this new duty “which codifies the current law, enshrines in statute what is commonly referred to as the principle of Enlightened Shareholder Value”.

    As I understand it, this doesn’t mean that the board has to act in the interest of the company’s employees (or its suppliers, its customers, the environment or anyone else), but it must have considered these interests – and be able to demonstrate that it has.

    I am sure that Cadbury is a well advised company, with a well advised board, so I am sure that they made their decision in accordance with CA2006 and in doing so had regard (amongst other matters) to the interests of the employees.

  • Comment number 96.

    It would be very unusual for any takeover/merger not to impact jobs somewhere in the merged entity. Isn't the bigger issue here what we (government, business, workers etc) should be doing to make the UK a more attractive location to support business activities? Education, taxation, reduction of 'red-tape', better support for entrepreneurial activity, bank lending etc etc rather than worrying unduly where our next bar of chocolate is coming from?

  • Comment number 97.

    Cadbury's bought with debt... When will people learn that debt is not a good idea?

    93. At 1:47pm on 19 Jan 2010, writingsonthewall

    The Flyglobespan issue has being going on for weeks - and it looks a bit murky underneath.

  • Comment number 98.

    Re #1 - this is Thatcher-introduced industrial policy, which the Labour party haven't had the guts to alter. The rationale for the closing down of much of UK industry was Thatcher's free market economics - which, incidentally via the "Big Bang" in the City, paved the way for the "Big Bust" we've just experienced. Labour should have done something about both the City and our openness to overseas takeovers, but don't be under any illusion that such changes would ahae been supported by the Conservatives.

  • Comment number 99.

    It's a pity that Cadburys didn't take a few of our MP's and cover them in chocolate!

  • Comment number 100.

    94. At 1:51pm on 19 Jan 2010, Oblivion wrote:

    "This is appalling. This is the stuff public unrest is made of. It would not be going too far to describe this abominable. Terrible."


    ...an opinion which is being voiced more and more frequently these days - still denied by large sections of the media as well as the bank / Government alliance who play such big roles in this robbery of our futures.

 

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