ConAgra Foods, Inc., Omaha, Neb., successfully completed its acquisition of Ralcorp Holdings, Inc., St. Louis, for $90 in cash per share of Ralcorp common stock. The closing of the transaction follows the approval of the acquisition by Ralcorp’s shareholders on Jan.29, and the receipt of all required regulatory approvals. With 36,000 employees and sales of approximately $18 billion annually, the combined company is one of the largest packaged food companies in North America. The transaction also positions ConAgra Foods as the largest private brand packaged food business in North America, with approximately $4.5 billion in combined annual private brand sales.
“We are excited to have closed the transaction and welcome our talented new team members from Ralcorp to the ConAgra Foods family,” says Gary Rodkin, chief executive officer of ConAgra Foods. “We are now in a position to begin the most substantial aspects of integration planning, and look forward to learning from and working with our new colleagues. This important acquisition reinforces and accelerates our ‘Recipe for Growth’ strategy, which also includes growth in our core business and adjacencies and expansion internationally.”
ConAgra Foods plans to communicate preliminary estimates of the benefit of the transaction on Fiscal 2013 and Fiscal 2014 EPS as part of its presentation to the Consumer Analyst Group of New York (CAGNY) in February. Following the completion of its financial planning process, which will take into account the growth trajectory of the combined business and the expected pace of synergies over a multi-year period, ConAgra Foods plans to provide investors with upwardly revised long-term EPS goals as part of its fiscal fourth quarter earnings release this summer.
ConAgra Foods will continue to be headquartered in Omaha and led by Rodkin. Kevin Hunt, former CEO of Ralcorp, will be a consultant to ConAgra Foods for the next 12 months. Richard Koulouris, vice president and president of the Ralcorp Food Group, and Charles Huber, vice president and president of the Ralcorp Frozen Bakery business, will report directly to Rodkin, effective immediately.