The year got off to a varied start, as middle-market PE deal value slumped in 1Q and volume surged, signaling a shift toward smaller transactions. In the 1Q 2018 US PE Middle Market Report, our analysts detail key trends evolving in the dealmaking environment, from the rise of add-ons to the average middle-market fund size nearing $1 billion.
Merck KGaA has reached a deal to sell its consumer health division to Procter & Gamble for $4.2 billion. Merck KGaA makes over-the-counter products such as vitamins, supplements and nasal decongestant for markets outside the US.
In a recent regulatory filing, activist investment firm Jana Partners revealed it holds a 9.1% stake in Pinnacle Foods, producer of brands including Duncan Hines, Birds Eye and Vlasic. Jana noted in the filing that it plans to talk with Pinnacle regarding possible measures, which could include “a sale or other consolidation opportunities.”
Less than a year after it launched Amazon Key, Amazon is extending that service from the home to the car. The company has joined with General Motors Co. and Volvo Cars to start offering in-car deliveries, giving its couriers access to potentially millions of vehicles in nearly 50 U.S. markets.
From February to April, the megaretailer’s prices declined nearly 4%, putting it in line with Dollar General.
The downtown Cincinnati-based grocer (NYSE: KR) announced the planned sale of the division to Blackburn, England-based EG Group for $2.15 billion in February. It began the search for a buyer for its convenience stores in October as part of its Restock Kroger initiative to invest in its workforce and increase shareholder value.
Competition in the grocery business is prompting Minneapolis-based Supervalu, Inc. to pursue the sale of its Shop ‘n Save and Shop ‘n Save East retail operations. Shop ‘n Save operates stores in the St. Louis area while Shop ‘n Save East operations are located in West Virginia, Maryland, Pennsylvania and Virginia.
As grocers ramp up home delivery, companies such as GrubHub and Uber Eats are rapidly expanding and growing their sales to consumers.
Although human capital and competition remain the chief concerns over which grocers lose sleep, keeping up with technology has reached unprecedented heights of concern, rising to No. 3 (45.5 percent) from No. 9 since last year’s Annual Report.
Purple is increasingly breaking out as a desired color in a wide variety of foods and beverages from ice cream to spaghetti. New innovations by ingredient manufacturers have brought natural purple coloring to the mainstream, often derived from juice, purple corn or flavonoids known as anthocyanins.