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Mon, Jan 25, 2010 - Page 10 News List

Kraft vows to invest in UK’s Cadbury after takeover is completed

AFP , LONDON

The strategy director of US giant Kraft Foods vowed Sunday to invest in British chocolate maker Cadbury and create more jobs in the business here as it seeks to head off concern about its takeover.

Michael Osanloo told the Sunday Telegraph that Kraft would respect the “history of Cadbury and the integrity of the brands” after it agreed to buy the British firm in a deal worth £11.5 billion (US$18.9 billion).

“As far as Cadbury in the UK goes it is our hope, desire and our plan to invest in Cadbury,” he said.

“I would fully expect that once we can actually look at what is going on and have a more informed perspective that this should, down the road, increase manufacturing jobs in the UK,” he said. “I genuinely believe that we can create a tremendous amount of savings in things like procurement, on how we source cocoa, dairy, sugar, packaging and advertising.”

“I am very optimistic that the vast majority of our synergy savings will come from things that do not affect jobs,” he said.

British Prime Minister Gordon Brown said this week his government had sought assurances from Kraft about the future of the more than 5,000 workers at Cadbury amid public dismay at the sell-off of such an iconic British brand.

Osanloo said it was “unfortunate” that Cadbury had previously been cutting jobs at its two major plants in Britain, adding: “I would love to be able to figure out a way to do something other than what the current plan is.”

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