Kraft outlines benefits of splitting business

NORTHFIELD, Ill. — Kraft Foods chairman and CEO Irene Rosenfeld said that taking the company's performance to the next level required "a bold approach," referring to last month's announcement to split the business into two independent, publicly traded entities.

Speaking at the Barclays Capital Back-to-School Consumer Conference on Wednesday, Rosenfeld said that each of the soon-to-be-created companies — including a high-growth global snacks business and high-margin North American grocery business, which will be put in effect in late 2012 — was "the best way to stage our businesses for long-term success, the best way for shareholders to value each business and the best way to ensure a bright future for our people."

As previously reported, Kraft Foods announced that the global snacks business will consist of the current Kraft Foods Europe and Developing Markets units, as well as the North American snacks and confectionery businesses. The North American grocery business would consist of the current U.S. beverages, cheese, convenient meals and grocery segments and the nonsnack categories in Canada and food service.

Rosenfeld noted that the global snacks business would include such billion-dollar brands as Cadbury, Jacobs, LU, Milka, Nabisco, Oreo, Tang and Trident, while the North American grocery business would include such billion-dollar brands as Kraft, Maxwell House, Oscar Mayer and Philadelphia in its portfolio.

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