Campbell Looks to Strengthen Portfolio

CAMDEN, N.J. - Campbell Soup Co. today said it is pursuing possible additions to its portfolio of brands, which includes Pepperidge Farm cookies and V8 beverages, Reuters reports.

"We are actively looking at a number of options to strengthen the portfolio," Chief Executive Douglas Conant told analysts during a conference calls to discuss the company's fiscal third-quarter earnings.

He and other senior executives declined to provide further details, saying the timing was premature. Conant did, however, say that it is unlikely Campbell would be expanding into any new geographic markets or product categories in the near term.

In May of 2001, Campbell bought several soup brands from Anglo-Dutch consumer giant Unilever Plc for about $900 million, making its the leading soup maker in Europe.

The world's largest soup maker today reported that its third-quarter net income fell 21 percent due to higher marketing expenses and more infrastructure investment. The company earned $96 million, or 23 cents per share, for the quarter that ended April 18.
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