Smithfield Foods in Talks with Campofrio

Smithfield, Va.-based pork processor Smithfield Foods Inc. is in talks to buy a controlling interest of the European packaged meats company Campofrio Food Group SA for 9.5 euros ($13.62) per share.

Smithfield, which currently owns 37 percent of the business, is considering a takeover bid for an approximately 50 percent stake of Campofrio. The company is in talks with Campofrio chairman Pedro Ballve.

No financing arrangements have been finalized, but Smithfield said Wednesday that it expects the estimated 500 million euros ($716.7 million) needed for the offer would be provided through a combination of existing liquidity and capital market financings.

"The acquisition of Campofrio would further Smithfield's long-term strategy of becoming a leading global consumer packaged meats company," said C. Larry Pope, Smithfield president and CEO, in a statement. "In addition, we are assessing potential synergies relating to sales, operations and raw materials with both our U.S. and international businesses."

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