Leaving aside the apparent misjudgement by Kraft in approaching Unilever and then withdrawing back to their bunkers, the reaction to the approach has wider and important implications.
We should see if the Kraft approach was just the first foray in a longer battle which will ultimately result in a deal of some sort, maybe around Unilever's food business.
However, there are wider issues around whether protectionism is going to adversely affect the free flow of monies globally. For many years the US has had regulation in place to stop deals, including CIFIUS. In Europe, governmental consents around have been required on deals for some time, for example in defence.
Historically, cartel offices have been non political and look at market economies only, but there is talk of more political reviews on anti trust agreements.
The question however, is whether the national interest arguments will now have a more significant effect on deals. I believe the Kraft deal was always going to struggle against unions and governments. The fact two of the most historically liberal economies in Europe the UK and Holland united politically and over regulation against this deal so quickly shows the world is changing, and changing fast.
UK takeovers already have rules caused by the Cadbury takeover which impose penalties on the actual or potential bidder, who can give binding undertakings as to future activities. This was used in the Softbank takeover of ARM.
However, we are we entering a world where governments can dictate whether a deal goes ahead; The Murdoch / Sky deal was an example. Whilst rules on broadcasting takeovers have been in place for over 40 years we are going to see a general popular consent regime. This should be resisted at all costs.
Theresa May must take £115bn hint from Kraft Heinz's failed Unilever bid