Food Industry Mergers and Acquisitions Drop in 2018

Chicago is the most popular city for acquisitions.

Adults Agreement Businessman 1056553

In the Food Institute's annual Food Business Mergers & Acquisitions report, it found that 527 food industry mergers and acquisitions occurred in 2018, down 11 percent from 2017. Manufacturers, investment firms and retailers led the deals, taking in over half. 

According to the report, the top deals were Marathon Petroleum's acquisition of Andeavor for $23.3 billion, Walmart's purchase of Flipkart for $16 billion, Conagra Brands' merger with Pinnacle Foods for $10.9 billion, Sainsbury's acquisition of Asda for $10 billion and Alibaba's buyout of Ele.Me for $9.5 billion. 

In addition, food processors made 152 deals last year, down 19.4 percent from 2017. The retail sector rose nearly 40 percent, however. 

While California continues to be the most popular start for acquisitions, companies also favored the Midwest as well, with Chicago being the most popular city for acquisitions.

Top states (by acquired company headquarters):

1. California (44)

2. Illinois (28)

3. Texas (21)

4. New York (19)

5. Colorado (15)

6. Wisconsin (15) 

Top cities (by acquired company headquarters):

1. Chicago (12)

2. New York (11)

3. Los Angeles (7)

4. San Francisco (6)

5. Denver (5)

6. Minneapolis (5)