- General Mills will pay $820 million in cash to acquire Annie's, an organic and natural food maker best known for its macaroni and cheese brands.
- The deal suggests a growing — and expensive market — for organic brands. The $46-a-share offer from General Mills, owner of Pillsbury, represents a 51% premium to Annie's 30-day average stock price.
- General Mills has been investing heavily in the organic/natural space in recent years, and now runs brands such as Cascadian Farms, Larabar, and Food Should Taste Good.
Few brands have been able to win consumers' hearts to the same degree as Annie's. And as we've noted before, Annie's has had to work hard to preserve its folksy reputation as the brand grew ubiquitous and the company went public. It wasn't an easy thing to do, but Annie's managed to hold on to the goodwill it has generated with consumers. Here's hoping that General Mills will be able to hold it as well.