ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

Monsanto shareowners back Bayer deal, CEO hopeful of U.S. approval

CHICAGO - Shareholders of U.S. seeds and agrochemicals company Monsanto Co approved the company's $66 billion acquisition by Bayer AG on Tuesday, Dec. 13, a deal that still requires regulatory approval to close as expected in late 2017. Increased...

2063097+monsanto1000600.jpg
A bushel of soybeans are shown on display in the Monsanto research facility in Creve Coeur, Missouri, July 2014. REUTERS/Tom Gannam

CHICAGO - Shareholders of U.S. seeds and agrochemicals company Monsanto Co approved the company's $66 billion acquisition by Bayer AG on Tuesday, Dec. 13, a deal that still requires regulatory approval to close as expected in late 2017.

Increased research and development spending by the combined companies and plans to develop a global seeds and biotechnology hub in St. Louis fuel hopes regulators will not block the deal, which was agreed upon in September, Monsanto CEO Hugh Grant said.

"I think those augur well for the deal," he told Reuters in an interview.

If the deal closes, it will create a company commanding more than a quarter of the combined world market for seeds and pesticides in the fast-consolidating farm supplies industry.

Uncertainty about whether President-elect Donald Trump would stand in the way of large mergers after taking office in January has clouded the outlook of some deals. Trump vowed during his campaign to block AT&T Inc's purchase of Time Warner Inc and look to break up Comcast Corp's deal to buy NBC Universal, citing too much concentration of power.

ADVERTISEMENT

The president does not directly decide if a merger is illegal under antitrust law. That is done by the U.S. Justice Department or Federal Trade Commission, which divide up the work of assessing mergers. If one of the agencies decides to stop a deal, it must convince a judge to agree.

Grant said he has not met with Trump or any of his transition team and did not elaborate on how the company was working to secure the deal.

The acquisition came after a string of large mergers that have roiled the agribusiness sector in the last year or so, including ChemChina's purchase of Swiss chemicals company Syngenta AG and a merger of Dow Chemical and DuPont.

DuPont's chief executive, Ed Breen, said last week the incoming Trump administration is not likely to have an impact on his company's merger with Dow Chemical.

2753817+X107_2798_9.JPG
The logo of Bayer AG is pictured at the Bayer Healthcare subgroup production plant in Wuppertal, Germany. REUTERS/Ina Fassbender/File Photo

Related Topics: AGRICULTURE
What To Read Next
Louis and Cyril Keller are the inventors of the Bobcat skid-steer loader and were selected as 2023 inductees into the National Inventors Hall of Fame.
Benson and Turner Foods will process cattle and hogs at Waubun, Minnesota, on the White Earth Reservation with the help of a USDA grant.
The Kinderkidz daycare and preschool is tentatively set to open their third location, the second in Dickinson, this Thursday.
A recent $30,000 per acre land sale in Sioux County, Iowa, sends signals into the land market in North Dakota, South Dakota, Minnesota and even as far away as Indiana.