Colgate-Palmolive to acquire Unilever's Sanex brand  In a bid to strengthen its business operations in Europe, consumer products giant Colgate-Palmolive announced Wednesday it will buy the Sanex brand from Unilever. 

Among other goods, Colgate-Palmolive specializes in the manufacturing of dental care and pet products. Per terms of the newly inked deal, the company will sell its laundry detergent business in Colombia to Unilever for $215 million. Latin American markets are Colgate-Palmolive's bread and butter, with the biggest portion of its sales coming from the region.

Analysts contend the deal was primarily driven by the rising commodity costs Colgate-Palmolive faces. In the past year, commodities like corn, wheat and cotton have surged in value amid burgeoning global demand and dwindling stockpiles. Unilever's decision to sell its deodorant and bath care products business was necessary for the company to achieve European Commission clearance to buy Sara Lee's personal care unit.

Asia, Africa, Latin America and the Middle East account for 50 percent of Unilever's revenue; the company asserts that while growth has been robust in those markets, mature economies like the U.S. and Western Europe are still experiencing tepid growth.
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