French food corp Groupe Danone put in a $16.8B cash offer to buy baby food magnate Royal Numico—at just under $75 a share, a 38% premium over last week's closing price. The acquisition will make Danone an industry leader in the baby food market and should be finalized within weeks, Bloomberg reports.
"Numico has all the characteristics we like: health orientation, extremely good research and development, market leadership and exposure to high-growth markets,'' said Danone's CFO. News of the buyout boosted Numico stock 11%, a little over $6 dollars, to a six-year high of $60.52. Danone shares dipped $2.75, or 3.3%, to $80.89, the largest decline since February. (Read more baby food stories.)