Brace for a merger of iconic snacks: Mondelez, maker of Oreo cookies and Cadbury chocolate bars, has proposed a deal to purchase Hershey, the Wall Street Journal reports.
Hershey's stock surged 15 percent after news of the proposed deal broke. Mondelez has an estimated market value of $69 billion, versus Hershey's $21 billion; other brands under the Mondelez umbrella include Nabisco, Philadelphia cream cheese, Tang, Ritz, Toblerone, Honey Maid, and more. Beyond its namesake chocolate candies, Hershey manufactures everything from Ice Breakers gum to Twizzlers. Incidentally, Hershey is licensed to produce and distribute Cadbury chocolate in the U.S., as Consumerist points out.
Such a deal would require approval from Hershey Trust, which controls 81 percent of the company's voting power. "The question is whether Mondelez's offer is sweet enough to woo the Hershey Trust, who's always been reluctant to be a bride," says independent brand expert Eden Gillott Bowe. Mondelez is certainly putting its best foot forward, however: It has reportedly promised to relocate its global chocolate headquarters to Hershey, Pennsylvania, in addition to providing protection for jobs at Hershey if a merger does occur, and it would also rename the entire company Hershey.
Sounds like Donald Trump's choice of snack foods may soon be severely limited, considering his boycott of Mondelez. Oh well, there's always Hydrox.
POST UPDATE 7/1 11:25 a.m.: Looks like this chocolatey conglomerate is but a dream: In a press release, Hershey says it's board of directors has unanimously voted to rejectMondelez's offer "and determined that it provided no basis for further discussion" between the two companies.