Chemicals giant Bayer sells seeds business to BASF for €5.9bn
13 Oct 2017
German chemicals manufacturer Bayer has sold a number of its crop seeds business units to BASF for €5.9 billion (£5.26 billion), as it looks to complete the acquisition of Monsanto.
The BASF deal includes sale of Bayer’s glufosinate-ammonium business and the related LibertyLink technology for herbicide tolerance, “essentially all of the company’s field crop seeds businesses, as well as respective research and development capabilities”, the firm said.
Globally, Bayer employs more 1,800 people across its crop seeds businesses. As part of the agreement, BASF said it would maintain all permanent positions, under similar conditions, for at least three years after closing of the transaction.
Bayer chairman Werner Baumann said: “We are very grateful to our employees who have played a key role in the success of these businesses over the years. At the same time, we are aware of the need to address certain overlaps in the combined product portfolio of Bayer and Monsanto.”
The chemicals firm is selling off various assets to appease concerns raised by competition authorities over its acquisition of Monsanto.
“We are taking an active approach to address potential regulatory concerns, with the goal of facilitating a successful close of the Monsanto transaction,” Baumann said.
In May last year, Bayer’s $62 billion move on Monsanto was rejected, with the company’s board saying the offer was “incomplete and financially inadequate”. Following an improved offer worth $66 billion, the companies are expected to merge next year.
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