Unilever has rejected Kraft Heinz's US$143 billion (AU$1.86 billion) offer, saying that it saw not financial or strategic merit in its company. If the deal pushed through, it would be the third-biggest takeover in the corporate history. The merging would also be the largest acquisition of a UK-based company.

Unilever disclosed that Kraft Heinz offered a mix of cash and stock and US$50 (AU$65) a share for the company. However, Unilever said that the offer fundamentally undervalues the company. "It would appear that Kraft Heinz has underestimated both the intrinsic value of Unilever and the challenge of acquiring control of a Dutch company whose stakeholders would have opposed such a move vociferously," Martin Deboo, consumer goods analyst at Jefferies International, said.

According to an anonymous source familiar with the deal, Kraft withdrew the offer as negotiating a deal after public disclosure was difficult. He added that Kraft did not expect the resistance from the UK-based company.

"Kraft Heinz's interest was made public at an extremely early stage. Our intention was to proceed on a friendly basis, but it was made clear Unilever did not wish to pursue a transaction. It is best to step away early so both companies can focus on their own independent plans to generate value," Kraft Heinz's spokesman Michael Mullen said by email. It was reported that Kraft was forced to disclose its offer in compliance with the takeover regulations of Britain.

There were speculations that both companies were interested in acquiring different brands. Unilever seemed to be interested in Jessica Alba's Honest Co. In 2016, there were reports that Kraft Heinz might buy Oreo and Mondelez. However, investors realised that acquiring Mondelez was not possible as its shares fell more than five percent at one point on Friday. Campbell Soup and Smucker were mentioned to be part of the line-up but both companies were reported to have disappointing sales.

Kraft and Heinz merged in 2015 and currently controlled by billionaire investor Warren Buffet and 3, a Brazilian private equity group. The equity group was known for its scythe to costs reputation irrespective of its impact in factories and the jobs. On contrary, Unilever was known for doing the right things for the environment for corporate social responsibility.

Unilever owns Dove soap, Ben & Jerry's ice cream and Hellmann's mayonnaise. Kraft owns Heinz Baked Beans and Philadelphia Cheese. On Friday, both companies' shares rose sharply. Unilever shares rose by 13 percent while Kraft shares rose by 11 percent on Wall Street.​