Unilever to return $5.3 billion to investors
Under a restructuring sparked by the rebuffed $143 billion offer by its U.S. rival, the maker of Dove soap and Knorr soup set out an accelerated cost-saving plan, the sale of its Flora to Stork spreads business where sales are declining, and a review of its dual-headed Anglo-Dutch structure.
As part of its strategy to justify its rejection of Kraft Heinz's approach, Unilever will also splash out 5 billion euros ($5.3 billion) on a share buyback and will raise its dividend 12 percent this year.
Unilever, one of Europe's biggest blue-chip stocks, called the Kraft episode a "trigger moment" to assess its business, as the global packaged goods industry faces slowing growth and greater competition. ■