British confectionery group Cadbury has caved in to an improved takeover offer from US rival Kraft Foods, valuing Cadbury at 13.1 billion euros ($18.9 billion).
Cadbury is the world's second-largest confectionery maker
The announcement that Kraft has taken over Cadbury follows a bitter battle for the iconic British chocolate maker, which is best known for products such as Dairy Milk chocolate, Cream Eggs and Trident chewing gums.
Cadbury's management accepted an increased bid of 840 pence a share, which means Kraft will pay 13.1 billion euros ($18.9 billion) for its rival.
As recently as Tuesday, Birmingham-based Cadbury had dismissed Kraft's takeover bid as "derisory," insisting that it seriously undervalued the company. Kraft had until Tuesday to increase its offer.
End of an era
Cadbury, which was founded in 1824, is the world's second-largest confectionery maker after Mars-Wrigley. Kraft is the world's second-biggest snacks group after Swiss-based Nestle.
Kraft's and Cadbury's combined sales would amount to some 70 billion euros ($100 billion), closing the gap to market leader Nestle.
Dairy Milk is Britain's favorite chocolate
"Kraft Foods believes a combination with Cadbury will provide the potential for meaningful cost savings and revenue synergies from which Cadbury security holders will benefit," the company said in a statement.
Kraft's improved offer comes at the eleventh hour, as Cadbury was determined to resist the advances of the US food giant. Kraft filed a hostile takeover for Cadbury in December after its initial bid of 11.8 billion euros ($17 billion) was rejected.
Cadbury then tried to get US rival Hershey and Italy's Ferrero on board to counter Kraft's offer, but failed to get the financing for such a deal.
Editor: Kyle James