Kraft drops Unilever mega-merger bid

US food giant Kraft Heinz has withdrawn its offer to merge with Unilever following public rejection of its offer.

Unilever: FMCG giant owns Marmite among its many brands
Unilever: FMCG giant owns Marmite among its many brands

In a joint statement, Kraft and Unilever announced the withdrawal of the proposal, stating, "Unilever and Kraft Heinz hold each other in high regard. Kraft Heinz has the utmost respect for the culture, strategy and leadership of Unilever".

Reuters reported that Kraft felt it was too difficult to negotiate a deal following the public disclosure of its bid so soon after its approach to Unilever.

On Friday, Unilever roundly rejected Kraft's bid in no uncertain terms saying it saw "no merit, either financial or strategic" in the offer.