Ferrero SpA is interested in buying Campbell Soup Co.'s international business, which includes biscuit brand Arnott's, two sources close to the matter said on Monday.
A Possible Deal
The Italian group, based in the Piedmont region, is working on a possible deal with Rothschild as advisers, one of the sources said, confirming an earlier report by Italian daily Il Sole 24 Ore. According to the newspaper, the deal could be worth more than $2 billion.
Campbell started the process of selling its international and fresh refrigerated-foods units in August, following a strategic review, joining the likes of other packaged food-makers, such as Kraft Heinz Co. and Kellogg Co., which have also been offloading some brands.
Campbell recently settled a months-long proxy battle with billionaire Daniel Loeb's hedge fund, Third Point LLC, which had pressured the company to sell itself.
Last month, the company said that the units that were put up for sale have attracted strong interest from potential buyers.
Campbell's international biscuits and snacks operating segment also includes Kelsen Group, along with the company's manufacturing operations in Indonesia and Malaysia, and its businesses in Hong Kong and Japan.
Ferrero, which also makes Kinder brand chocolates and Tic Tac, declined to comment, while a Campbell spokesman said that the company does not comment on rumours and speculation.