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General Mills has fought off big name bidders from across the global food industry to buy a 50% stake in the French yoghurt maker Yoplait.

The private equity firm PAI is selling its 50% share in a deal that is thought to be worth around €800m. PAI said the agreement is based on a €1.6 billion valuation for the whole of Yoplait.

General Mills had been hotly tipped as a likely winner of the bidding auction, which has attracted approaches from the likes of Nestle, Bel and The Bright Food Company. This is because the US food company already holds a license for the Yoplait brand in North America.

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