Heinz bought by Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway for $28bn

WASHINGTON. February 14. KAZINFORM US billionaire Warren Buffett is to buy food giant Heinz in a deal worth $28bn (£18bn).

Mr Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway company and private equity firm 3G will take over the food company, famous for its ketchup and baked beans.

In a statement, Heinz called the deal "historic", and the largest ever in the food industry.

The takeover has been approved by the company's board, but still needs to be voted on by shareholders.

"The Heinz brand is one of the most respected brands in the global food industry and this historic transaction provides tremendous value to Heinz shareholders," said Heinz chairman, president and chief executive William Johnson, BBC reported.

"We look forward to partnering with Berkshire Hathaway and 3G Capital, both greatly respected investors, in what will be an exciting new chapter in the history of Heinz."

The deal will marry one of the best-known brands in the food industry with one of the US's most famous businessmen.

Mr Buffett is one of the richest men in the world, having amassed a multi-billion-dollar fortune over decades of investing. His investment expertise has earned him the nickname "the sage of Omaha".

The deal will offer shareholders $72.50 a share, a 20% premium on the company's all-time high share price.

Berkshire Hathaway will contribute $12-13bn in cash to the deal.

Heinz has been operating in the US market since it was founded in Pittsburgh in the late 19th Century.

Currently it sells food products in more than 200 countries, and is the biggest seller of baked beans in the UK.

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