China’s Bright Food Group Co. Ltd. has agreed to sell iconic British cereal brand Weetabix to US cereal company Post Holdings for US$1.76 billion, Reuters reports, citing a spokesman for the Chinese conglomerate.
The sale, if completed, would mark the end of Chinese ownership of the British cereal maker after Bright took control of the company from Lion Capital in 2012 amid a major overseas push stretching from Australia to Israel, the news agency said.
The sale did not signal the end of Bright’s international ambitions, Shanghai-based Bright spokesman Pan Jianjun said on Tuesday.
“This is a part of our internationalization strategy. Selling assets enables us to better expand. Going forward Bright will stick to our overseas push,” he said.
Reuters reported in January that Post Holdings, the No. 3 US cereal company, was among four bidders vying for Weetabix, a business founded 85 years ago.
The other bidders were Britain’s Associated British Foods, Cereal Partners Worldwide and Italian pasta maker Barilla.
Bright had hired Goldman Sachs to run an auction for the well-known British brand which had earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) of 130 million pounds (US$163.67) in 2016, Reuters reported in December.
Weetabix and Post Holdings were not immediately available for comment.
Bright Food is the parent firm of a number of listed companies including Bright Dairy and Food Co Ltd. (600597.CN).
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