Merck KGaA, a German pharmaceutical and chemical company, has agreed to acquire Sigma-Aldrich, a life science and technology company based in St. Louis, for $17 billion in cash. Merck will buy all the outstanding shares of Sigma-Aldrich for $140 per share in cash, representing a 37 percent premium to the Sigma’s closing price of $102.37 on Friday.
Merck plans to maintain a “significant presence” in St. Louis and in Billerica, Mass. Sigma-Aldrich, led by President and CEO Rakesh Sachdev, reported second-quarter earnings of $133 million on revenue of $701 million. The company operates in 37 countries and has about 9,000 total employees.