Durex owner Reckitt Benckiser offloads food business for £3.2bn

Durex owner Reckitt Benckiser offloads food business for £3.2bn

Durex owner Reckitt Benckiser offloads food business for £3.2bn

McCormick said Reckitt's food arm was a "perfect match" for the group and pledged to keep the well-known brand names, which also include Cattlemen's BBQ Sauce.

McCormick said the deal with Reckitt Benckiser Group's food business would position the company as a leading maker of condiments in the U.S. The French's and Frank's RedHot brands would become McCormick's top brands, the company said.

McCormick expects the hot sauce category will continue to see robust growth and said it would integrate the business, RB Foods, into its consumer and industrial segments.

Though McCormick's leverage ratio will increase because of the deal, the company plans to maintain its dividend policy and curtail its share-buyback program in an effort to maintain its investment-grade credit rating, it said.

The Sparks, Md., spice maker said it would integrate the United Kingdom consumer-goods company's RB Foods business-whose products include French's mustard and Frank's RedHot hot sauce-into its commercial and industrial segments. "RB Foods' focus on creating products with simple, high-quality ingredients makes it a ideal match for McCormick as we continue to capitalize on the growing consumer interest in healthy, flavorful eating".

Reckitt shares closed at 7,812.45 pence each in London Tuesday after rising 0.61% on the session, extending their full-year gain to 13.44% and valuing the entire group at just under $55 billion.

Reckitt Benckiser, a United Kingdom -based company that makes products such as Veet hair remover, Air Wick air fresheners, Lysol cleaner and Durex condoms, inked a $17.9 billion deal in February to buy baby-food maker Mead Johnson Nutrition Co.

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