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Global Powers of Consumer Products 2014

The connected consumer evolves


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Despite a slowdown in the global economy, the world’s 250 largest consumer products companies generated sales in excess of $3.1 trillion in fiscal 2012 (which encompasses fiscal years ended through June 2013).  This resulted in an average company size of $12.5 billion.

This report provides an outlook for the global economy, an analysis of market capitalisation in the industry, a look at M&A activity in the consumer products sector, and a discussion of major trends affecting consumer products companies.

Despite a fragile global economic recovery, the report found that well-funded investors have continued to seek merger and acquisition (M&A) opportunities that strengthen their strategic positions. In 2012, there were 1,298 deals completed by consumer products companies, up from 1,274 in 2011 and 1,117 in 2010. For 2013, 1,182 deals had been reported as of February 22, 2014. Deal activity was found to be stimulated by improved credit availability, low interest rates, rejuvenated capital markets, and, in some cases, companies’ sizable cash reserves.

Private equity has shown a renewed interest in consumer products. In one of the largest acquisitions in the food business, H.J. Heinz was taken private in June 2013 by Berkshire Hathaway and Brazilian investment firm 3G Capital in a $28 billion buyout. 3G and Berkshire are equal equity partners in Heinz.  

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