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Wed, Feb. 3, 2:07 AM
- ChemChina is offering to buy Switzerland's Syngenta (NYSE:SYT) in a deal worth more than $43B - a move that would translate into the largest ever international takeover by a Chinese company.
- Syngenta's board has recommended the 480 francs per share deal (a 20% premium based on Tuesday's closing price) to shareholders.
- If completed, the transaction would help ChemChina transform into the world's biggest supplier of pesticides and agrochemicals, while snatching an asset that was once the target of St. Louis-based Monsanto (NYSE:MON).
- SYT +3.7% premarket
- Previously: WSJ: ChemChina nears deal to buy controlling stake in Syngenta (Feb. 02 2016)
Tue, Jan. 26, 8:05 AM
- CTFN Contributor Valeria Camerino reports that market observers believe ChemChina's CHF470 (US$462) per share bid ($44B) for 70% of Syngenta (NYSE:SYT) is more likely to pass antitrust scrutiny than a potential merger with Monsanto (NYSE:MON) because there is less overlap. A deal could be reached as soon as next month.
- In December, Syngenta's board turned down Monsanto's $47B offer stating that it significantly undervalued the firm.
- ChemChina is a major player in generic pesticides, but has no appreciable footprint in high-tech herbicides, insecticides, fungicides or seeds. Also Chinese ownership would enhance penetration in key emerging markets. A bump in the road, however, could be the purchase of Syngenta's U.S.-based assets by a Chinese acquirer.
- Syngenta is an attractive target on the basis of its seeds business and first rate crop protection chemicals portfolio. It is the only pure play in Europe in these areas.
- As far as Monsanto is concerned, one observer believes it makes more strategic sense for Syngenta to acquire Monsanto and dispose of the crop protection chemicals business and any required seeds assets, along with the related salesforce and technical support. He feels that Monsanto would be better served by merging with BASF's (OTCQX:BASFY) crop chemical business.
- Previously: Bloomberg: ChemChina moves closer to potential Syngenta deal (Jan. 15)
- Previously: Syngenta talking with Monsanto, ChemChina and others, chairman says (Dec. 22, 2015)
Wed, Jan. 6, 2:19 PM
- Monsanto (MON -1.8%) CEO Hugh Grant says a deepening decline in the agricultural industry has strengthened the rationale for combining the company, the world’s largest seller of seeds, with Syngenta (SYT -2.2%), the top seller of pesticides, but engagement about a possible merger has been “difficult."
- In today's earnings conference call, Grant did not elaborate on the difficulty in engaging SYT, but said MON still sees a "significant opportunity" through integrating SYT's pesticide portfolio and that MON's pipeline of crop genes, high-performing seeds and new computer-powered farming services make the company a prime partner for merger deals.
- SYT CFO and interim CEO John Ramsay had said in an interview last month that the company was discussing possible deals with “a number of parties” and signaled new openness to discussing a deal with MON.
- Earlier: Monsanto to cut more jobs as Q4 sales slide, 2016 EPS outlook trimmed
Dec. 22, 2015, 2:57 PM
- Syngenta (SYT +4.1%) is in talks with Monsanto (MON +2.1%), ChemChina and others but has not received a concrete takeover offer and is keeping all options open, Chairman Michel Demare says.
- SYT's board, which this year rebuffed a takeover offer from MON, is considering making an acquisition, merging with a rival or selling the company, according to Demare.
- "Given what shareholders expect for the next 12 months, going it alone is hardly possible," Demare says, explaining that SYT could move ahead on its own but shareholders currently lack the patience to wait for a cyclical upswing; sector consolidation also is adding pressure to act, he says.
- Earlier: Syngenta upgraded to Buy from Hold at Jefferies, as warm weather a boost
- Earlier: Syngenta open to deals with rivals including Monsanto, CEO says (Dec. 18)
Dec. 18, 2015, 12:17 PM
- Interim Syngenta (SYT +2.1%) CEO John Ramsay tells Dow Jones the company is discussing possible deals with "a number of parties" and is open to combinations with companies including Monsanto (MON +0.9%).
- While Ramsay says MON has not revived its $46B takeover effort that was abandoned in August, his comment that SYT is "interested in any value-adding opportunity that exists for us in this industry, which includes Monsanto and many others" marks a notable departure from its earlier stand.
- Last week's merger between DuPont (DD -0.7%) and Dow Chemical (DOW -0.4%) removed two potential partners for SYT and eventually could pose a greater competitive threat in the ~$100B global seed and pesticide industry.
Dec. 15, 2015, 8:51 AM
- Syngenta (NYSE:SYT) +1.3% premarket following a Bloomberg report that ChemChina Chairman Ren Jianxin met with execs from Syngenta (SYT) in Europe last week.
- ChemChina is said to be discussing a revised proposal to acquire SYT after its previous cash offer of 449 Swiss francs/share ($457) was deemed too low.
- Bloomberg also reports that SYT also is holding informal talks about a combination with Monsanto (NYSE:MON), almost four months after rejecting the latter’s $46.6B takeover offer; MON also is considering opportunities to acquire crop chemical assets from other companies.
- Pressure is rising for SYT to do a deal in the aftermath of the Dow-DuPont merger agreement, and SYT also is likely to evaluate buying assets that may come up for sale as a result of the merger.
Dec. 11, 2015, 7:07 PM
- Farm groups are calling for regulators to closely scrutinize the proposed merger of Dow Chemical (NYSE:DOW) and DuPont that could give the companies more clout in the markets for seeds and pesticides.
- Chemicals and materials businesses would comprise most of DowDuPont's revenues, but the markets for those products tend to be fragmented; the combined companies' agriculture business would boast big market shares, such as 41% of sales of U.S. corn seeds and related genetics vs. DuPont’s current 35% and Dow’s 6%.
- Also, the merger could cause further deals among the six companies that currently dominate the global market for seed and crop chemicals, a group that also includes Monsanto (NYSE:MON), Syngenta (NYSE:SYT), Bayer (OTCPK:BAYZF, OTCPK:BAYRY) and BASF (OTCQX:BASFY).
- But Dow and DuPont do not appear to expect antitrust problems; DuPont CEO Ed Breen says the companies plan to divest only modestly - “nothing that would move the needle."
Dec. 9, 2015, 12:10 PM
- Any merger between Dow Chemical (DOW +10.5%) and DuPont (DD +12.6%) would have far-reaching consequences for European rivals, prompting a series of moves as pesticide and seed makers scramble to face a combined U.S. giant.
- A merger would make it more likely that Monsanto (MON +0.2%) re-approaches Syngenta (SYT +7.7%), Bernstein analysts say, speculating that a new bid could come in at 485 Swiss francs, more than the 470 cash-and-stock offer withdrawn in August.
- The pressure on MON to defend its position as the biggest seeds player would be "huge" as chemical companies will want to defend or even strengthen their market positions, says MM Warburg's Oliver Schwarz.
- Regulatory hurdles to a merger would require the combined company to sell off some businesses, likely sparking interest from contenders such as BASF (OTCQX:BASFY -0.1%), Schwarz says. “All the big companies that are swimming in this pond would probably be interested in taking over assets that Dow or DuPont would sell."
Nov. 18, 2015, 2:23 PM
- Syngenta (SYT -3.7%) and other major players in the seeds and crop chemicals industry are in active discussions about potential tie-ups, Financial Times cites Chairman Michel Demare as saying in an interview.
- Conversations among the leading companies in the sector were "extremely active... "We are all convinced that [the sector] will look quite different in six months," Demare says.
- The comments come after Monsanto (MON +1.4%), which withdrew a bid to take over SYT earlier this year, said yesterday it was discussing whether to acquire or merge with major rivals in the seed and agrochemical industries.
Nov. 17, 2015, 2:32 PM
- Monsanto (MON -0.8%) top execs are discussing whether it should try to acquire agrochemical rivals, including another potential run at Syngenta (SYT +6.8%), MON President Brett Begemann says.
- The internal discussions, ongoing since MON abandoned its $46B offer for SYT in August, include weighing the benefits of bidding for rivals such as Bayer CropScience (OTCPK:BAYRY +1.1%), Reuters reports.
- MON expects its profit growth will reach 20%/year, and says it does not need a big acquisition to achieve its previously reported goal of doubling earnings to more than $10/share by 2019, Begemann also says.
- Earlier: Syngenta pops on news of another Monsanto approach
Nov. 17, 2015, 11:27 AM
- "Monsanto internally discussing another Syngenta approach" - Bloomberg
- SYT +2.6% to $74.22.
- Related: Syngenta: Back To Normal After Monsanto's Retreat (Sep. 16)
Nov. 5, 2015, 4:13 PM
- DuPont (DD +0.8%) is in discussions with Syngenta (SYT +6.3%) and Dow Chemical (DOW +0.4%) about potential major agriculture deals, Dow Jones reports.
- DD is said to be discussing potential combinations involving its ag division with SYT and DOW, as deal talk has gathered steam since Monsanto (MON -1%) abandoned its effort to acquire SYT in August; MON instead could face the threat of much-enlarged competitors if its rivals end up combining and it strikes no combination of its own.
- U.S. farm income is on pace to hit its lowest level in nearly a decade, pressuring profits in the global market for GMO seeds and chemicals to kill weeds and insects.
Nov. 3, 2015, 1:11 PM
- Deere (DE -0.4%) agrees to acquire Monsanto’s (MON +2.3%) Precision Planting equipment unit for an undisclosed sum, as it employs its strategy to boost farmer efficiency and productivity with technology.
- The deal allows nearly real-time data connections between certain John Deere farm equipment and Climate FieldView farming software programs.
- Reuters reports the news was met with skepticism by some farmers who have used Precision Planting's computer hardware and software tools to help them plant seeds in ways that will be most productive for boosting yields.
- This is DE's third precision agriculture deal in the past five weeks; yesterday, DE agreed to buy Monosem, the European leader in precision planter manufacturing, and nearly a month ago it announced a joint venture to further develop a cloud software platform developed by DN2K for agricultural retailers and other consultants.
Sep. 3, 2015, 3:28 AM
- Looking to appease shareholders after rejecting a $47B takeover attempt from Monsanto (NYSE:MON), Syngenta (NYSE:SYT) is planning to buy back more than $2B of shares and sell its global vegetable seeds business.
- "The board and management are determined to accelerate shareholder value creation and our actions today underpin our commitment to do so," Chairman Michel Demare said in a statement.
- Syngenta's share repurchase program will begin in the coming weeks.
Aug. 27, 2015, 3:04 AM
- Having ditched its $46B offer for Syngenta (NYSE:SYT), Monsanto (NYSE:MON) may look to downshift beefing up its crop protection portfolio through humbler acquisitions, partnerships and licensing agreements.
- "If we don't acquire Syngenta, we'll still be on Plan A," Monsanto's Michael Frank said last month. "It won't be Syngenta. It will be somebody else, or somebodies else."
- Monsanto's $46B bid is the largest deal to be pulled since the withdrawal of Valeant's $54B offer for Allergan last November.
- Previously: Syngenta must explain "Plan B" after Monsanto pulls deal, investors say (Aug. 26 2015)
- Previously: Monsanto's "discipline," commitment to resume buybacks pleases analyst (Aug. 26 2015)
Aug. 26, 2015, 12:40 PM
- Syngenta (SYT -11.5%) shareholders are calling on the board to clarify how it intends to make up billions of dollars of lost shareholder value after Monsanto (MON +8.6%) abandoned its takeover bid.
- "We need the board and the management to explain their Plan B," says Pauline McPherson, co-fund manager of Kames Capital's global equity fund, which holds SYT shares.
- Other investors question why SYT's management were so reluctant to open their books
- MON's $46B bid is the largest pulled deal since Valeant Pharma's November 2014 withdrawal of its $54B offer for Allergan.
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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