UPDATE 3-Pilgrim's Pride tops Tyson Foods' offer for Hillshire

martes 3 de junio de 2014 12:34 GYT

* Pilgrim's offers $55 per share, up from $45 earlier

* Hillshire shares up 9 pct, above offer price

* Pilgrim's, Tyson shares down 2 pct (Adds analysts' comments and details, updates share movements)

By Sruthi Ramakrishnan and Devika Krishna Kumar

June 3 (Reuters) - Pilgrim's Pride Corp, the second largest U.S. chicken processor, raised its offer for Hillshire Brands Co, escalating a bidding war with Tyson Foods Inc for the maker of Jimmy Dean sausages.

Hillshire shares rose more than 9 percent to a life high of $58.50 on the New York Stock Exchange on Tuesday morning, after Pilgrim's Pride said it raised its offer to $55 per share from $45.

Tyson Foods spokesman Worth Sparkman declined to comment. The company, the world's second largest meat processor after Brazil's JBS SA, had offered $50 per share.

JBS owns about 75 percent of Pilgrim's Pride.

The bids pit the two largest meat processors against each other as they seek to expand margins that have been hit by low prices and volatile feed costs.   Continuación...