Campbell Soup Co. is expected to announce Thursday it is putting its Godiva Chocolatier business up for sale in order to focus on its soup and baked-snacks businesses. Citing people close to the matter, the Wall Street Journal reports Campbell will explore strategic alternatives for the Godiva unit, which generates annual sales of $500M. The company was expected to attract a broad range of interest from potential buyers. No estimates were given for a possible price, but given Godiva's strong brand name, it could fetch $750M to $1B or more, according to the Journal. Godiva no longer fits Campbell's business focus, which is increasingly geared towards healthier items such as low-sodium soups and Pepperidge Farm whole-grain bread, the Journal said. Increased soup and V8 beverage sales boosted Campbell's third-quarter earnings, and the low-sodium soups have contributed to the turnaround of the U.S. soup business. Campbell has hired Centerview Partners to handle the sale, the report said.
Sources: Wall Street Journal
Commentary: 100 Stocks to Offset Rising Food Prices • Campbell Soup's CEO: 'Satisfied Despite Decline in Soup Sales'
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