Monsanto abandons bid to buy Swiss rival Syngenta

Photo courtesy of Reuters
Courtesy of Reuters

Monsanto, the Creve Coeur-based agricultural products company, announced Wednesday that it would abandon its nearly $47 billion bid to buy Syngenta, an agricultural chemicals producer based in Switzerland.

The seed maker has pursued an acquisition for months, making three separate offers to buy Syngenta. At one point in the process, Monsanto proposed moving its legal headquarters overseas and changing its name to make the deal work.

Monsanto’s latest bid on Aug. 18 included a raised cash-and-stock offer of 470 Swiss francs ($495.57) per share, according to the Wall Street Journal. Syngenta said the raised offer was still insufficient.

Monsanto said in a statement that it believes a combination with Syngenta would have created “tremendous value for shareowners of both companies and farmers,” but that it’s not pursuing a union with the chemical producer at this time.

“Syngenta has communicated that Monsanto’s enhanced proposal did not meet Syngenta’s financial expectations,” Monsanto’s statement said. “Without a basis for constructive engagement from Syngenta, Monsanto will continue to focus on its growth opportunities built on its existing core business to deliver the next wave of transformational solutions for agriculture.”

Monsanto shares closed Wednesday at $97.08, up more than 8.5 percent since the day’s opening bid. Syngenta closed the day at $67.51, down more than 10.5 percent from the opening bid.

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