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Timeline: Kraft agrees Cadbury deal after 4-month fight
(Reuters) - Kraft Foods agrees a deal to buy Cadbury on Tuesday for around 11.9 billion pounds ($19.55 billion) by increasing its overall bid and offering more cash in an offer that was recommended by Cadbury's board.
The following are the key events in Kraft's takeover battle for Cadbury:
AUG 28 - Kraft's Chairman and CEO Irene Rosenfeld meets Cadbury's Chairman Roger Carr to outline a takeover deal in cash and shares which valued Cadbury's shares at 755 pence each, but Carr dismissed the approach. The Kraft bid was worth 300p in cash and 0.2589 new Kraft shares for each Cadbury share.
SEPT 7 - Kraft goes public with the bid, but by this time the value of the same offer had slipped to 745p per Cadbury share, or 10.2 billion pounds. Cadbury promptly rejects the bid.
SEPT 12 - Cadbury's Carr in a letter to Rosenfeld again rejects the bid saying it was an "unappealing prospect" being absorbed into Kraft's "low growth conglomerate business."
SEPT 16 - Warren Buffett, the world's second richest man and a leading shareholder in Kraft with a 9.4 percent stake, warned the U.S. food group not to overpay for Cadbury.
SEPT 21 - Cadbury contacts the UK Takeover Panel to request a "put up or shut up" request be sent to Kraft, which would give a time frame for Kraft to come up with a formal bid.
SEPT 23 - Cadbury CEO Todd Stitzer is reported at a Bank of America/Merrill Lynch conference as saying he saw some potential benefits from a Kraft deal and discussed valuations with investors, according to a note from the conference.
SEPT 25 - Cadbury's Stitzer says he does not believe Kraft's offer for his company made strategic or financial sense, while Cadbury said his previous remarks had been misconstrued to imply a softening of his views about a deal with Kraft.
SEPT 30 - UK Takeover Panel rules that Kraft has until 1700 GMT on Nov 9 to make a formal offer for Cadbury or walk away for six months. Cadbury reiterates its rejection of the Kraft bid.
OCT 21 - Cadbury posts upbeat third-quarter trading with underlying sales up 7 percent as it raise its 2009 target for sales and profit margin growth. The shares fail to react as a counterbidder for Kraft is seen increasingly unlikely.
OCT 22 - Nestle and Hershey report third-quarter results but neither mention a speculated joint bid for Cadbury with Nestle's focus on increasing its share buyback.
NOV 3 - Kraft's third-quarter results disappoint investors with weaker-than-expected revenue and as it cut its 2009 sales forecast. CEO Rosenfeld says she will not overpay for Cadbury.
NOV 9 - Kraft formalizes its bid at the same terms for Cadbury as the original approach -- 300p in cash and 0.2589 new Kraft share for each Cadbury share -- valued at 717p.
NOV 18 - Both Italy's Ferrero and Hershey said separately they were reviewing a possible bid for Cadbury but gave no assurance that either would make an offer.
NOV 23 - Cadbury shares hits all-time high of 819-1/2 pence on speculation of a battle between Kraft and rivals for the British chocolate maker.
DEC 4 - Kraft posts its offer document to Cadbury shareholders starting off a two-month fight for the British group under UK takeover rules. Kraft says its bid is now worth 713 pence a share or 10.1 billion pounds.
DEC 14 - Cadbury issues its official defense document promising bigger dividends and strong growth as Cadbury reminds its shareholders that Hershey and Ferrero may bid.
DEC 18 - Cadbury CEO Todd Stitzer tells Reuters in an interview that a significant number of its major shareholders do not believe Kraft's bid reflects Cadbury stand-alone value.
JAN 5 - Kraft sweetens bid with 60p more cash but cuts shares on offer to keep offer price unchanged.
JAN 6 - Kraft says it has a 1.52 percent take-up for its offer for Cadbury at its first closing date for the bid.
JAN 12 - Cadbury gives its final official defense against Kraft bid reporting robust trading and rejecting the bid on valuation. Ferrero pulls out, say sources close to the deal.
JAN 14 - Cadbury fires last words in its defense as media reports say that Hershey is looking at mounting a solo bid, but many analysts doubt whether Hershey can come up finance. Reporting by David Jones; Editing by Louise Heavens)
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