Cambpell mushroom soup cans Copyright Justin Sullivan, Getty Images

Campbell Soup Strengthens Grip on Snack Foods with Snyder's-Lance Acquisition

Snyder's-Lance brands include Snyder's of Hanover, Cape Cod, Pop Secret and Kettle Brand.

The Campbell Soup Co. strengthened its presence in the snack food category with an announcement Monday that it would purchase Snyder's-Lance, whose salty snack brands include Snyder's of Hanover, Cape Cod, Pop Secret and Kettle Brand.

It's the second major acquisition announcement in the snack food category on a single day, as Hershey Co. announced its plans to buy Amplify Snack Brands Inc., maker of SkinnyPop popcorn.

The Campbell Soup deal calls for Campbell to acquire Snyder's-Lance for about $4.9 billion in cash, reports Bloomberg. The $50 per share purchase price represents an approximately 27% premium to Snyder's-Lance closing stock price on Dec. 13.

Snyder's-Lance, based in Charlotte, employs about 6,000 and has 13 manufacturing sites.

"This acquisition will dramatically transform Campbell, shifting our center of gravity and further diversifying our portfolio into the faster-growing snacking category," Denise Morrison, Campbell's president and CEO, said in a statement.

Campbell's snack division includes well-known foods such as Pepperidge Farm Goldfish crackers and Milano cookies, as well as Kjeldsens butter cookies. With the Snyder's-Lance acquisition, snack foods would represent about 46% of Campbell's annual net sales on a pro forma basis, the company said. Previously it represented 31%.

The transaction is subject to approval by Snyder's-Lance shareholders and traditional regulatory approval. Closing is expected in the second quarter of 2018, according to Campbell Soup.

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