Sweet news for Cadbury

Hershey Co. and Ferrero International SA are considering a possible offer for Cadbury PLC, already the target of a hostile takeover by Kraft Foods Inc., reports Associated Press.

"Hershey confirms that it is reviewing its options and at this stage there can be no assurance that any proposal or offer will be forthcoming," the company said in an. announcement to the London Stock Exchange on Wednesday. Italy's Ferrero posted a similar statement.

 

Cadbury dismissed Kraft's bid worth about $16.4 billion as "derisory," opening the door for a competing offer. Cadbury shares were up 1.4 percent on the news.

 Together, Hershey and Ferrero could probably swing a higher offer than that of Kraft  (still the strongest rival, according to analysts), but if the two make an offer, a new 60-day timeframe for the bidding begins again and Kraft will likely have to sweeten its offer.