Ben & Jerry's is staying tightlipped amid rumours that Unilever and Body Shop founder Anita Roddick are bidding for a substantial share of the company. And it is also denying any rift has developed between its founders Jerry Greenfield and Ben Cohen, who are said to be "slower and fatter and better friends than ever". However, if the takeover should proceed it is believed Greenfield will relinquish any investment in the company. His partner Cohen would retain a 36% stake ­ with 28% falling to Unilever and 36% to Anita Roddick. Cohen and Greenfield currently own 15% of shares but control 43% of the votes. The company is currently valued at £164m. It launched in the UK in 1994 and claims it saw a 152% growth last year. {{NEWS }}

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