Wednesday, 13 January 2010

Cadbury test case

The Government seems keen to make the Kraft bid for Cadbury's a test case of whether shareholders are really now taking their ownership responsibilities more seriously. According to various reports, tomorrow Mandy is due to meet with a group of key institutions and some representative bodies to stress the importance of the forthcoming stewardship code and talk chocolate.

Regardless of what you might think about the bid - and I have to say I haven't heard many institutions talk favourably about it so far - this has to be a good thing. If Labour is serious about this kind of stuff a) it's vital that BIS and its ministers are part of the initiative and b) we need a clear cut example to focus on. This bid fits the bill.

I bet it will be an interesting meeting. Worth having a quick look back at recent M&A activity - even though the value creation track record is unconvincing to say the least I can't think of many examples of institutions holding out against bad deals. RBS-ABN Amro is the obvious one here. The only institution I know that opposed it was..... Co-op Asset Management.

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