Campbell Soup Co. To Sell Bolthouse Farms and Garden Fresh Gourmet
CAMDEN, NJ - Mega grocery foods giant Campbell Soup Company announced this week that it is zeroing in on its Campbell Snacks and Campbell Meals and Beverages businesses and unloading its Campbell Fresh business, which includes Bolthouse Farms, Garden Fresh Gourmet, and its refrigerated soup business. Reuters also reported that following a month-long review and pressure from a hedge fund, Campbell might even put the whole company up for sale.
“Campbell’s Board of Directors considered a full slate of strategic options, including optimizing the portfolio, divesting businesses, splitting the company, and pursuing a sale. The Board concluded that, at this time, the best path forward to drive shareholder value is to focus the company on two core businesses in the North American market with a proven consumer packaged goods business model. Importantly, the Board remains open and committed to evaluating all strategic options to enhance value in the future,” said Interim President and CEO Keith McLoughlin in a press release.
Campbell is working with Goldman Sachs and Centerview Partners to divest its Campbell Fresh and Campbell International businesses. The fiscal 2018 net sales of these businesses totaled approximately $2.1 billion, according to a press release, and proceeds from the divestitures will be used to reduce Campbell’s debt.
Staying on-trend with what’s hot with consumers now—health, snacking, and convenience—Campbell’s Board-led strategy outlines driving profitable growth and maximizing margins and cash flow for its Cape Cod, Goldfish, Kettle Brand, Lance, Late July, Pace, Pacific, Pepperidge Farm Farmhouse and Milano cookies, Prego, Snyder’s of Hanover, Campbell’s soup, Pepperidge Farm fresh bakery, SpaghettiOs, and V8 brands.
“Our plan will build upon our existing strengths,” McLoughlin continued. “We are moving forward with a sense of urgency to complete these changes in fiscal 2020 and beyond. The Board and management team are committed to deleveraging the company, retaining our investment grade credit rating, and maintaining our dividend. We will pursue further actions in addition to those announced today to optimize our portfolio and performance.”
How will Campbell’s divestment of its brand affect the realm of fresh produce? And will the entirety of the company be the next to go on the market? AndNowUKnow will continue to report.