Nestle Denies Possible General Mills Acquisition

ZURICH - Nestle SA's chief executive today said the company has no plans for a major deal, following reports that the company is considering a $22 billion bid for General Mills, according to Reuters.

In an interview c.e.o. Peter Brabeck granted with Swiss newspaper L'Agefi and published today, he said there are no major transactions in the works. "We are established in all the major sectors which we consider to be strategic," Brabeck told the paper.

Citing regulatory concerns, the company says it is passing on large acquisitions and wants to go from lower-margin food processing to higher-margin functional food items.

"We are carefully following what is going on in the nutrition area, but no company of stature is currently on the market," said Brabeck. "We are accelerating the process of divestment in all those sectors in which our research and development cannot bring any discernable added value. But we obviously continue to round out and complement our activities in all those countries where we are present."

General Mills has been fighting to offset stalled sales of bakery products, caused by consumer enthusiasm for low-carb diets.

Bloomberg News earlier reported that Nestle wishes to purchase General Mills, citing unnamed people familiar with the matter. Nestle has not not yet approached General Mills, and no deal is imminent, Bloomberg reported one of its sources as saying.
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