I dont care who owns Cadbury

 There seems to be a lot of froth about whether a none-UK company, namely Kraft owns Cadbury. I have to say I really couldn’t care less, in the sense that this is what happens in the modern world. If we object to foreign ownership of our companies should the rest of the world object to our success stories?

What happens when Tesco buys a local supermarket elsewhere in another country. Should they be able to put up protectionist barriers? When in the US and you fill up at a BP and Royal Dutch Shell filling station should the Americans object and want a US oil company serving them. You do know the British institution that is Boots is not a UK company now. Well not really… owned by an Italian and as far as I understand not headquartered in Nottinghamshire now for tax reasons. That’s life.For all we know Kraft may invest heavily into Cadbury and push its products much more in the US. Instead of less jobs why couldn’t there be more? What people should argue for is the best for the company – which is why I am not hung up on whether it is in foreign hands. You know what – a foreign owner may do more for the company. I support Chelsea – and in the 80’s they weren’t spectacular. I quite like the Russian owner.Now if Hershey had taken them over and changed the make up of the chocolate to that crappy cheesy tasting excuse for chocolate that would be a whole different story!


13 Responses to I dont care who owns Cadbury

  1. Pingback: Twitted by houseoftwits

  2. OperaNut says:

    I would suggest that any other manufacturer of Chocolate even Continental ones would not stick to the tried and tested formula that the British public by and large prefers. I have a slightly Continental taste in that I prefer to have a higher Cocoa level than that of my wife, She thinks Cadbury's is the bee's knee's. She would, she was born in Birmingham. Frankly I so long as there is no asset stripping and the company expands keeping more jobs in the UK without importing the USA's idea of a Chocolate that will be just fine and dandy. Cadbury's may not be 'proper' chocolate, but it makes my wife happy. If she's not happy I'm not, as I'm sure many other married men will vouchsafe!

    • editor says:

      Absolutely spot on. I have tasted Hersheys stuff when I lived in America – tastes like cheese to me. I dont like European high cocoa content chocolate. Kraft will realise that to be successful they will build onwhy Cadbury has been a success – and that certainly means no change to the chocolate.

  3. I don't agree. It is a test of whether we want to remain viable as a manufacturing nation and whether we are prepared to let an iconic British firm fall into foreign hands. Dare I suggest that the attitude you have taken is one of the reasons that our economy has become dangerously unbalanced and our manufacturing sector has been so badly weakened.

    I have blogged about it here:

    • editor says:

      But the point is its not be "allowed" to fall into foreign ownership. It has been taken over for a variety of reasons.

      Should other countries try to stop our world beaters not being succesful abroad? Vodafone for example or perhaps Tesco?

      Perhaps Cadbury wasnt performing as well as it should.

      What about Boots – they are foreign owned. I don't see how that has damaged the company. They still manufacture many things in Nottingham – yet their products are available on US shelves. Terrible that isn't it

  4. Daniel Lindholm says:

    To David Skelton: I am amazed to find that someone as ignorant of basic free market economic theory and UK economic statistics has been selected as a Tory Parliamentary candidate. Your arguments sound more like those of an embittered old trade unionist.

    The facts are: In 2008 British manufacturing output was higher than ever before, in real value terms (i.e. adjusted for inflation). In fact, we produced 2.5x more than we did in 1950, and 7% more than in 1997.

    More cars are built in the UK today than ever before, and all without the government owning anything. Clearly many low-skilled labour-intensive industries have moved to the Far East, but they have been replaced by more advanced manufacturing where the skills and high productivity of UK workers are able to out-compete lower cost lower productivity countries.
    Of course, you‘ll probably counter that manufacturing as a share of GDP keeps going down, and now stands at only 13%. This is because other sectors, like services and financial services, where we have more of a comparative advantage (i.e. higher profits), have grown even faster than manufacturing. Still, our manufacturing as a share of GDP is higher than in France, or the US (both 12%).

    The crucial point here is that if real output goes up and the share of GDP goes down, this is absolutely brilliant news as that tells us we are getting richer.

    I also wonder how you feel about the even more devastating destruction of our farming industry. By the same logic you should be arguing that it is disastrous that it currently accounts for only 1% of UK GDP, which is only a sixth of the level in 1900, and a twentieth of the level in 1850. And, you’ve got it, despite the reduced share of GDP, the output is higher than before.

    If you are elected, as I hope you are, you should realise that you can serve your area and the rest of the country the best, not by arguing for subsidies or protection for inefficient, globally uncompetitive industry, but by allowing these unprofitable enterprises to go bust or move to China or wherever, and instead fostering a dynamic, enterprising economy where it is attractive to start new ventures whether in advanced manufacturing, services or financial services, where new, better paid and more secure jobs will also be created.

  5. Stephen Brown says:

    This is the same kind of crap used by mad free marketeers who weren't bothered when our manufacturing base all but disappeared. Think about it – in a recession what gets closed down? Home production or something in a country far away? Think Corus. Think Pilkington. The French wouldn't even allow Nestle to take over Danone. We should learn from this before the fast failing UK is finally dismembered and idiots like you say it doesn't matter. And by the way I AM a good right winger.

    • editor says:

      Always a good way to debate calling someone an idiot eh Stephen? So wa Boots wrong to be taken over – which employs more people in manufacturing that Cadbury and still does? Was that idiotic? Do you object to foregn ownership of any UK company? I assume you just buy Britis? I wonder where your clothes are made?

      How about playing the ball not the man. The argument I have made is that foreign ownership is not necessarily bad and can often open up markets the company could not access – through better supply chain etc etc. Of course all you have done is say he argument is crap, Im an idiot and mention a few other companies. What about Vodafone, BP, Shell, Tesco – all British who have taken over companies in other countries. Should they have been stopped?

  6. Andrew Smith says:

    Major take overs should be judged on the individual merit of the value they will have to UK stakeholders. Should Nissan have been allowed to take over Rover in 1988, almost certainly yes, as they would have invested in the company as a route to European expansion. Equally my memory of the Boots deal was the company was struggling at the time and its take over has probably been a good thing.

    However, I see little value to the UK in deals like Corus, BAA and Rowntree. Every other nation follows its interest (France + German utility companies) and we should remember that.

  7. Crispin says:

    In my opinion you have all missed what is important here;
    Cadburys has been a pillar of wholesome business practice and as such a shining beacon to corporates in caring well for the health, minds and soul of the families of its employees. They provided housing, schooling and utils to employees and became the most loved employer in the country. The offer will benefit Kraft enormously as they need to bolster this side of their business and I would expect this to mean a flow of resources to the US from Cadburys. The Family should have retained ownership – shares spread so widely across diverse groups of people will always segway away from employee-minded business management…

    • editor says:

      Just as Boots has done more in the community for over a century than most companies. Setting up a school for the workers providing breakfast for the workers on the instigation of Florence Boot. And how did they do it – they made a profit. And who is to say that since the merger they do not do more in respect of social responsibility. I speak as someone who worked for Boots and whose wife did close to two decade of work there.

  8. D James says:

    The idea that Cadbury is a British company and that Johnny Foreigner is getting their grubby little hands on it is ridiculous. Everywhere you look, print, TV and particularly from MPs, including a Treasury Minister (Byrne), Lord Mandelson of Everywhere and Gordon Brown. They’re all at it. Cadbury employ only around 10% of their staff in the UK. I’m betting a minority of their total revenue is derived in the UK and that revenue growth is highest outside the UK. Only around a third of the shareholders are UK based. The so called ‘iconic’ brand of chocolate called Bournville, with all the emotive baggage associated with that name, is manufactured where? France.

    Where were all these nimby moaners when Cadbury was buying brands in other countries over the years? Just have a google look at some they acquired. I can understand a Daily Mail column, but a Treasury Minister and the Minister of State at the Dept of whatever they are called now but used to be the DTI, and the PM?

  9. D James says:

    oh and @Crispin.

    That is just the sort of romantic nonsense that the Cadbury PR machine here spinning. Cadbury in the UK had long ceased to be the philanthropic provider of utopian ideals eons ago. In 2007 it was they who announced the closure of the Keynsham plant, which, for some bizarre reason the Unions and everyone else were asking Kraft to keep open.

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