Swiss-headquartered food group Nestle is believed to be close to agreeing terms to buy US pet food company Ralston Purina.

Nestlé, whose own pet food brands include Friskies, Alpo and Mighty Dog, is believed to have offered $33 for every Ralston share, some 34% above the company’s current stock value, valuing its bid at nearly $10 billion.

Ralston, with products such as Purina Dog Chow, has a 27% share in the $4.3bn US dog food market and 33% of the $2.6bn cat food market. The prospect of this being added to Nestle’s 12% and 13% respectively could yet raise a few eyebrows among anti-trust regulators.

News source: BBC Online Business News (UK)