Cadbury owner Kraft Foods has announced a shock move to split itself into two separate businesses. Under the plans, which the US food giant hopes to complete before the end of 2012, the business will split into two publicly-traded businesses: one for its US grocery business and another for its global snacks portfolio. Today’s surprise announcement comes 18 months after Kraft bought the British-owned confectionery group Cadbury. “We have built two strong, but distinct, portfolios,” said Kraft chairman Irene Rosenfeld in announcing the split. “Our strategic actions have put us in a position to create two great companies, each with the leadership, resources and strong market positions to realize their full potential.” A series of strategic acquisitions including Cadbury “have made Kraft Foods the world’s leading snacks company,” Kraft said in a statement, A review by the company board and management “has shown that these two businesses would now benefit from being run independently of each other,” Kraft said. The snacks business is expected make some $32 billion in yearly revenue, while the grocery spin-off was expected bring in approximately $16 billion.
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