PepsiCo (PEP) is planning to buy SodaStream (SODA), a producer of carbonated drink-making machines, for $3.2 billion. The $144-per share cash deal is at a 32% premium to SodaStream’s 30-day volume weighted average price, and is expected to close by January 2019 subject to a vote by SodaStream’s shareholders as well as regulatory approvals. SodaStream stock has surged about 10% and Pepsi shares were slightly up in the pre-market hours.
SodaStream, which is based in Tel Aviv, Israel, manufactures machines and refill units which allow customers to make their own sodas or sparkling water at home. The company saw good growth in the sales of its machines and refillable cylinders for its most recent quarter. SodaStream reported solid results for the second quarter of 2018 and its stock has climbed more than 80% thus far this year. SodaStream CEO Daniel Birnbaum will stay with the company after the acquisition.
PepsiCo has been seeing a slowdown in its beverages business in North America, which posted declines in the most recently ended quarter
This acquisition is part of PepsiCo’s new strategy to move beyond stores and into consumers’ homes. The retail landscape is evolving, along with food and grocery, and over the next seven years, a vast majority of customers are expected to make grocery purchases online. Prominent brands are also facing pricing pressures.
PepsiCo has been seeing a slowdown in its beverages business in North America, which posted declines in the most recently ended quarter, as a result of shifts in consumer preferences from sugary drinks to healthier options. Keeping in line with this trend, the food and beverage giant has changed its focus to healthy products from sugary ones. PepsiCo launched Bubly in February to help improve sales in the sparkling water business.
The deal will also benefit SodaStream in terms of expansion. The company currently has a presence in over 40 countries and its biggest markets include the US, Canada and France. SodaStream can expand its business with the help of PepsiCo’s vast presence worldwide.
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