France: Carrefour has made a €494m cash bid for Guyenne et Gascogne, one of its biggest franchisees in France. G&G runs six Carrefour hypermarkets in France and 28 smaller Carrefour Market stores, generating sales of €604m in 2010. Carrefour said the bid reflected “the group’s confidence in its plan to inject new momentum in its activities in France”. To help fund the move, Carrefour said it would exercise an option to sell its stake in Spanish supermarket Eroski.

US: Diamond Foods has delayed filing its first quarter results because of an internal investigation into its accounting of payments to walnut farmers. The company, which has already had to delay its acquisition of Pringles from P&G due to the investigation, said it would file the accounts as soon as possible after the investigation, which is now expected to conclude in February.

Canada: Hershey’s has agreed to buy a confectionery company in British Columbia that holds a patent to make chocolate centres from real fruit juice. Brookside Foods, which has annual revenues of $85m, specialises in dark chocolates with antioxidant-rich fruit centres. “We look forward to building Brookside by leveraging Hershey’s scale at retail,” said Hershey’s CEO John Bilbrey.

South Africa: Unilever has opened its biggest dry foods factory, near Durban. Built at a cost of £51.5m, the factory will produce 65,000 tonnes of product a year and will have the capacity to manufacture 100,000 tonnes. “It is the first major greenfield investment in South Africa since the 2010 World Cup,” said Rob Davis, South Africa’s minister of trade and industry.

Haiti: Heineken has signed a deal to acquire the biggest brewer in Haiti. The Dutch brewing giant said the acquisition of Brasserie Nationale d’Haiti, which makes local beers as well as Guinness and some PepsiCo soft drinks under license, would create opportunities for the earthquake-stricken country. It added that the country’s beer market had good prospects. “The Haitian beer market has shown solid growth, but remains relatively underdeveloped,” said John Nicolson, Heineken’s Americas regional president.