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(ShareCast News) - Unilever has called a deadline for bids for its £6bn spreads business of 19 October, according to reports overnight.
Several private equity firms have been preparing to make offers for the unit, which makes margarines such as Flora and Stork, Reuters reported.
Reports earlier in the summer suggested bids in the realms of £6bn were likely and that private equity firms Clayton Dubilier & Rice and Bain Capital had formed one of the bid consortiums.
When the FTSE 100 consumer good giant announced results in July chief financial officer Graeme Pitkethly said preparations to auction the division were well under way and that he was confident that there would be, "a lot of excitement" around the auction.
Unilever put the spreads division on the block in April after it rejected a £115bn takeover from Kraft Heinz, having separated the business from its wider food division into a standalone unit in 2014.
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