Monsanto rejects Bayer’s higher offer but still open to negotiation

Bayer AG recently offered Monsanto $64 billion in exchange for Bayer’s acquisition of the U.S.-based seed company. Monsanto has declined Bayer AG’s latest acquisition offer but remains open to further talks with the German chemicals and healthcare group.

Bayer and Monsanto have also discussed a potential confidentiality agreement that would allow for deeper due diligence, but Monsanto’s widely expected rejection puts pressure on Bayer to increase the offer.

Bayer said last Thursday that it had upped its bid by $3 per share. Its latest $125-per-share offer is the largest all-cash bid on record for the deal. The company also offered a $1.5 billion reverse antitrust breakup fee, about 2.3 percent of the overall value.

Access to Monsanto’s confidential information has been an issue in Bayer’s negotiations since its first offer in May.

Last week, Bayer said that it had addressed Monsanto’s questions about financial matters and was prepared to work with regulators if necessary to complete a deal.

Bayer investor Henderson Global Investors has called for a shareholder vote on the takeover of Monsanto, saying that it threatens the long-term strength of Bayer. Other investors have expressed concern that Bayer will pay too much to acquire Monsanto.

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