3G Capital raising up to $10 billion for takeover, blog says

SAO PAULO (Reuters) - 3G Capital Inc, the buyout firm controlled by Brazilian billionaire financier Jorge Paulo Lemann, is raising between $8 billion and $10 billion to finance an acquisition of a global consumer goods firm, a Brazil-based blog said on Tuesday.

Brazilian Jorge Paulo Lemann, co-founder and board member of 3G Capital, a global investment firm, speaks to students from scholarship foundation "Fundacao Escolar", in Sao Paulo, Brazil, August 1, 2016. REUTERS/Paulo Whitaker

According to the Brazil Journal blog, which cited people close to 3G, at least 10 wealthy Brazilian investors had already committed a minimum $100 million each to the new fund. Alexandre Behring, the 3G partner who is in charge of the firm’s day-to-day operations, has remained closely involved in the fundraising effort, the blog said.

Calls to 3G’s office in Rio de Janeiro went unanswered.

Investors have long speculated what the next target for Lemann, who is worth $28 billion according to Forbes Magazine, and 3G could be Oreo cookies maker Mondelez International Inc MDLZ.O or General Mills Inc GIS.N, which owns Pillsbury and Betty Crocker.

The blog said an acquisition would be done through Kraft Heinz Co KHC.O, in which 3G has a 24 percent stake.

Shares in Mondelez gained 3.7 percent to $45.87, while General Mills added 2.4 percent to $63.32 in mid-afternoon trading on Tuesday.

According to the blog, Lemann’s camp has declined politely checks between $20 million and $50 million for the new fund, on the grounds that larger money commitments could optimize any fundraising efforts. Tennis player Roger Federer and supermodel Gisele Bündchen are among investors in the new vehicle, Brazil Journal said.

Lemann, a globe-trotting financier with Swiss roots, rose to prominence over the past decade following a series of mega deals that drew praise and funding from U.S. billionaire Warren Buffett. Both tycoons have teamed up several times in the past, the most recent being a joint effort to buy ketchup maker H.J. Heinz Co for $23.2 billion three years ago.

Harvard University-educated Lemann and longtime partners Carlos Alberto Sicupira and Marcel Telles are 3G Capital's main partners. They are one of the largest investors in Anheuser Busch InBev SA ABI.BR, the world's largest beer maker.

Buffett also helped finance the 3G-engineered merger of Burger King Corp with Canadian donut chain Tim Hortons, creating Restaurant Brands International Inc QSR.TO.

Editing by David Clarke and Alan Crosby