Wed, Jun. 24, 8:55 AM
- Monsanto (NYSE:MON) +0.2% premarket after reporting FQ3 earnings that easily beat estimates and sales that rose 8% Y/Y to nearly $4.6B, but it also expects FQ4 earnings to break even while analyst consensus had forecast EPS of ~$0.33.
- MON reaffirms guidance for the full year, expecting EPS at the low end of $5.75-$6.00 vs. $5.77 analyst consensus; gross profit growth percentage in the Seeds and Genomics segment is now seen flat Y/Y, while Ag Productivity gross profit is now seen down only slightly due to the agreement with Scotts Miracle Gro as an offset to the anticipated 15%-17% decline in gross profit from continued softening of generic glyphosate pricing and currency headwinds.
- For the current quarter, corn seed and traits sales of $1.52B were slightly below expectations, while ag productivity sales of $1.39B slightly beat consensus.
- MON says it plans to spend more than $1B over the next three to five years for production of dicamba weedkiller at its plant in Luling, La.; it expects to begin selling crop seeds genetically engineered to tolerate both Roundup and dicamba next year to help farmers control weeds no longer killed by Roundup alone.
Wed, Jun. 24, 8:02 AM
Wed, Jun. 24, 7:03 AM
Tue, Jun. 23, 5:30 PM
Tue, Jun. 23, 3:15 PM
- Dow Chemical's (NYSE:DOW) widely used 2,4-D weedkiller is added to a World Health Organization list of potential carcinogens, just three months after the agency made a controversial assessment of Monsanto’s (NYSE:MON) glyphosate herbicide.
- 2,4-D - used for 70 years to control weeds in wheat, corn and soybean fields as well as gardens and lawns - is “possibly carcinogenic to humans," according to a report from the WHO's International Agency for Research on Cancer.
- Dow strongly objects, saying the IARC’s classification is inconsistent with government findings in nearly 100 countries that have found 2,4-D is safe to use as directed.
- The IARC says 2,4-D is less of a cancer hazard than glyphosate, but that if finds strong epidemiological evidence that the weedkiller induces oxidative stress and moderate evidence that it suppresses the immune system.
Tue, Jun. 23, 10:47 AM
- Facing a tough time from Syngenta (SYT -0.6%), Monsanto (MON -0.7%) is exploring other options should the former reject its $45B offer.
- Monsanto would approach Germany's Bayer (OTCPK:BAYRY -0.1%) about acquiring its crop chemicals business if it can't buy Syngenta, Brett Begemann, Monsanto's chief operating officer, told Bloomberg.
- "I don’t know what Bayer is going to do with their crop-protection business, whether they’ll sell it or not," Begemann said, "But I’m sure they’d be happy to talk about some other kind of marketing arrangement."
- Previously: Syngenta Chairman comments on Monsanto's approach (Jun. 23 2015)
Tue, Jun. 23, 3:11 AM
- "A serious proposal to buy Syngenta has to be made at full and fair value," Syngenta (NYSE:SYT) Chairman Michel Demare said in a video on the company's YouTube channel.
- "It has to recognize for shareholders the inherent combination benefits. And it has to provide a high degree of certainty that the transaction will be closed."
- Syngenta rebuffed an initial $45B approach by Monsanto (NYSE:MON) in May and recently rejected the latter's extra $2B offer if the merger failed.
Mon, Jun. 15, 6:51 PM
- France's Environment and Energy Minister is asking garden shops to stop over-the-counter sales of Monsanto's (NYSE:MON) Roundup weedkiller as part of a wider fight against pesticides seen as potentially harmful to humans.
- MON says it has no information relating to a change in the marketing authorization for Roundup and that there is no new scientific data available to challenge it.
- France already is considering a move to restrict self-service sales of plant protection products for domestic gardeners as part of a wider move to crackdown on pesticides, to be applied from 2018; a full ban on the use of pesticides by home gardeners in France is planned for 2022.
Wed, Jun. 10, 6:58 PM
- Monsanto (NYSE:MON) is pitching its proposal to acquire Syngenta (NYSE:SYT) directly to investors this week as it hosts meetings in Europe with shareholders of both companies and plans to continue pressing its case, MON VP of strategy Scott Partridge says.
- MON has no plans to raise its current offer for SYT, which represents a 43% premium to SYT’s share price before the deal talks were reported in late April, but it could increase its offer if SYT enters formal negotiations and opens its books, which would give MON a better idea of potential cost savings in a deal, Partridge says.
- MON has no specific timetable for entering into a deal, Partridge says, adding that "we're not going away."
Wed, Jun. 10, 11:58 AM
- Monsanto (MON +1.1%) strategy executive Scott Partridge says the company does not plan to increase its takeover offer for Syngenta (SYT -0.1%), and that it would be "bidding against itself" since no other suitor has emerged, Dow Jones reports.
- SYT on Monday rejected MON’s latest ~$45B offer, deriding as "paltry” a proposal to pay it a $2B reverse breakup fee if regulators block a deal.
Mon, Jun. 8, 2:47 PM
- Analysts say Syngenta's (SYT -1.2%) latest rejection of Monsanto's (MON +0.7%) latest offer does not mark the end of the takeover battle, but instead creates an opportunity for the companies to begin discussing the price.
- "We see the fact that Monsanto came back relatively quickly as a good sign for another [improved] offer which might be interesting enough for Syngenta’s management and shareholders,” analysts at Baader Helvea say, believing that an offer that raises the cash component of the deal from ~45% or increases the takeover price above 500 francs/share might entice SYT management and shareholders.
- Berenberg analyst John Klein says he still does not expect MON to increase its offer substantially, and "the next step should be a formal - potentially hostile - offer.”
- Meanwhile, the potential deal is sowing fears that another round of industry consolidation will boost prices for seeds and pesticides, WSJ reports.
Mon, Jun. 8, 11:58 AM
- Monsanto (MON +0.7%) is upgraded to Neutral from Underweight with a $120 price target at Atlantic Equities, which believes a potential deal with Syngenta could bring in strategic and financial benefits, and the firm believes ag fundamentals are unlikely to see further deterioration.
- However, the firm says MON's core seeds business is meaningfully below the level required to meet management's target of doubling EPS from 2014 to 2019; with low-single-digit growth estimated for 2015, 2016-19 now requires a growth rate significantly above the historic trend to achieve the goal.
- An additional headwind comes in the form of the 35% Y/Y decline in Chinese glyphosate prices, the firm says; despite management proactively seeking alternative means of growth, the company's targets for 2019 increasingly would be at risk.
Mon, Jun. 8, 1:52 AM
- Monsanto (NYSE:MON) has now offered to pay a $2B reverse break-up fee to Syngenta (NYSE:SYT) if it cannot obtain global regulatory approvals for an acquisition and reiterated that it would sell any overlapping business to obtain clearance for the deal.
- The move is the latest step in a bid by the world's largest seed company to take over its Swiss rival. Syngenta had earlier rejected a $45B cash and stock offer, saying it undervalued the company and didn't sufficiently compensate for antitrust risks.
- Update: Syngenta has rejected the approach, calling it the "same inadequate price" with the same flawed view of execution risks.
Fri, Jun. 5, 7:20 AM
- BASF (OTCQX:BASFY) is more likely to go after Syngenta's (NYSE:SYT) seed business rather than the whole company, sources told Bloomberg, following Wednesday's report that BASF was interested in the company.
- In May, Syngenta rebuffed Monsanto's (NYSE:MON) $45B offer, although the two are still talking and working to resolve antitrust concerns.
- BASF, meanwhile, is on the lookout for assets that would have to be divested (the seed business) if Monsanto succeeds in a Syngenta takeover.
- Previously: Reuters: BASF considers potential bid for Syngenta (Jun. 03 2015)
- Previously: Monsanto says deal would mean sale of entire Syngenta seed business (May. 20 2015)
Wed, Jun. 3, 12:55 PM
- BASF (OTCQX:BASFY) is considering a potential offer for Syngenta (SYT +4.4%), and is speaking to investment bankers about the possibility of an offer, according to a Reuters report.
- SYT so far has spurned a $45B takeover offer from Monsanto (MON -0.3%), but lawyers representing the two companies reportedly have met to discuss whether regulatory obstacles can be overcome.
Tue, Jun. 2, 6:50 PM
- Lawyers for Monsanto (NYSE:MON) and Syngenta (NYSE:SYT) are quietly working together to discuss regulatory hurdles that would arise from the potential combination of the two companies, Bloomberg reports.
- SYT also may consider entering formal negotiations if MON sufficiently raises its offer and provides a multibillion-dollar termination fee - perhaps ~10% of the purchase price, which would amount to $4.5B at the current bid - to compensate for the risks of completing a deal, according to the report.
- SYT also is said to want MON to increase the portion of cash vs. stock in the offer from the original proposal of 45% cash.
Monsanto Co along with its subsidiaries provides agricultural products for farmers. Its seeds, biotechnology traits, herbicides and precision agriculture products provide farmers with solutions that improve productivity.
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