General Mills Completes $1.2B Yoplait Acquisition

The company now owns a 51 percent stake in France-based yogurt manufacturer Yoplait, S.A.S.

Golden Valley-based General Mills, Inc., on Friday announced that it has completed its $1.2 billion deal to acquire a 51 percent stake in Yoplait, S.A.S.

In addition to acquiring the stake in France-based Yoplait S.A.S., the company also received a 50 percent stake in a related company that holds the worldwide Yoplait brands. General Mills bought the stake from PAI Partners and Sodiaal-which will co-own the Yoplait brand.

According to General Mills, Yoplait is the second-largest yogurt brand in the world. General Mills has licensed the brand from Yoplait for more than three decades.

“Yoplait is a fantastic global brand with tremendous potential,” Ken Powell, chairman and CEO of General Mills, said in a statement. “General Mills and Sodiaal are well-positioned to advance and grow the Yoplait brand around the world. It is an exciting combination.”

General Mills said in March that it had entered into “exclusive negotiations” to buy a 50 percent stake in Yoplait. Before that, there was fierce competition for the stake. General Mills remained tight-lipped about the possibility of buying Yoplait, but Bloomberg reported in February that it was among the leading bidders for the stake-which nine companies were vying for.

Following months of speculation and negotiations, General Mills announced in May that it had signed a definitive agreement to acquire the stake in Yoplait.

General Mills is Minnesota's eighth-largest public company based on its revenue, which totaled $14.8 billion during the fiscal year that ended in May 2010.