Hands off our chocolate! We don’t want foreigners (and especially Americans) owning Cadbury! At least, that seems to be a sentiment shared by many Britons. Energy, water companies, car manufacturers, newspapers, football clubs and trains in Britain with strong British traditions have been purchased by non-UK companies and people. So, what makes Cadbury, or a chocolate manufacturer, different?
Unlike, for example, football clubs where results matter and not so much owners’ nationality as long as they actually make money available to the manager, or trains which had been (and still remains) pretty ghastly, Kraft’s take-over of Cadbury has aroused pretty strong disappointment and anger. Perhaps Cadbury is close to many people’s hearts, since chocolate bars are often the tangible remainders of childhood.
In the end, all the talk and anger, especially over the RBS’s role in financing the deal, are all huff and puff, and there’s nothing that the government can do. However, with this sense of unease over the economy, protectionism may become more attractive to an increasing number of people in the UK.