Snacks giant Mondelez International is abandoning its takeover bid for American confectioner Hershey after its $23bn (£18bn) offer was rejected.
The deal would have created the world’s biggest maker of confectionary, but Hershey turned down the cash and stock offer in June.
Hershey shares tumbled by as much as 12% in late US trading on the news. Mondelez shares rose by almost 4%.
Mondelez brands include Cadbury chocolate and Trident chewing gum.
Its chief executive Irene Rosenfeld said the board was “disappointed with the outcome” but had decided there was “no actionable path forward toward an agreement”.
“Our proposal to acquire Hershey reflected our conviction that combining our two iconic American companies would create an industry leader with global scale in snacking and confectionery and a strong portfolio of complementary brands,” she said in a statement.