Tue, Sep. 20, 12:41 PM
- Weakness in the crop and fertilizer markets may not have hit rock bottom yet, meaning that now is the right time to merge leading farm input suppliers, Agrium (AGU +1.7%) CEO Chuck Magro says in making a pitch to skeptical investors for a merger with Potash Corp. (POT +0.7%)
- "Are we at the bottom yet? We don't know. We know there's more upside than downside. This is the time in the cycle where it makes sense to do mergers and acquisitions," Magro says.
- The deal would combine POT's crop nutrient production capacity with AGU's farm retail network, and some AGU investors worry that the merger would leave them with greater exposure to the weak potash market.
- U.S. prices of potash, urea and phosphate fertilizers, as well as corn and soybean values, are well below five- and 10-year averages, the two companies say in a joint presentation at a Scotiabank investor conference in Toronto.
- Rival fertilizer producer Mosaic (MOS +0.3%), which would be dwarfed by the merged AGU-POT, also is considering acquisition options, CFO Rich Mack says at the conference.
Mon, Sep. 12, 6:10 PM
- Potash Corp. (NYSE:POT) and Agrium (NYSE:AGU) both finished lower in today's trade after Canada’s two largest fertilizer producers agreed to an all-share merger to create a company that would control nearly two-thirds of North American potash capacity and almost one-third of phosphate and nitrogen capacity there; POT closed -1.2% while AGU finished -2.7%.
- AGU CEO Chuck Magro, who will be CEO of the merged company, and POT CEO Jochen Tilk, who will become executive chairman, say they are confident that the deal will receive regulators' approval as proposed, without the need for divestitures, but others are skeptical.
- "This deal has some real antitrust concerns," says former U.S. Department of Justice official Seth Bloom, who adds that an antitrust review is unlikely before January, when a new U.S. president takes office.
- The merger would leave Mosaic (NYSE:MOS) as North America's only other major potash producer; Bloomberg reports that AGU held early stage deal talks with MOS, but the talks fizzled out earlier this year and did not overlap with negotiations with POT.
Tue, Aug. 30, 10:21 AM
- Potash Corp. (POT +12.3%) and Agrium (AGU +6.6%) resume trading after a halt for volatility following a Bloomberg report that the companies are in advanced merger talks.
- A combination reportedly could be announced as soon as next week, although no final decisions have been made.
- Related stocks also are ticking higher: MOS +7.3%, CF +4.4%, IPI +13.7%, SQM +3.1%, UAN +3.3%, TNH +2.3%, ICL +3.9%.
Nov. 24, 2015, 3:11 PM
- Potash Corp. (POT +1.5%) is preparing a new takeover approach for K+S (OTCQX:KPLUY), which likely would come next spring, Reuters reports, citing German investor newsletter Platow Brief.
- POT on Oct. 5 withdrew its €7.9B takeover proposal for K+S, citing the decline in global commodity markets and a lack of engagement by K+S management.
- Also: AGU +1.7%, MOS +1.8%, IPI -1%.
Nov. 18, 2013, 4:12 AM
- Russian billionaire Mikhail Prokhorov - owner of the Brooklyn Nets - has agreed to acquire a 21.75% stake in Uralkali (URALL), the world's biggest potash miner, from the company's main owner, Dagestani tycoon Suleyman Kerimov.
- Kerimov and his partners own a third of Uralkali, while China Investment Corp, China's sovereign wealth fund, purchased a 12.5% holding in September.
- Uralkali caused turmoil in the potash markets after it ended its joint venture with Belarusian state-owned miner Belaruskali in July. The JV, called Belarusian Potash Co, controlled around 40% of the global market and so had a major influences on prices.
- Following the breakup, Belarus arrested Uralkali CEO Vladislav Baumgertner in August, since when he has been in jail or under house arrest. (Previous)
- Related tickers: POT, MOS, AGU, SQM, IPI.
- Related ETFs: MOO, CROP, PAGG, VEGI.
Oct. 28, 2013, 3:27 PM
- Mosaic's (MOS +1.6%) deal to buy the phosphate business of fellow fertilizer producer CF Industries (CF +4.3%) for $1.2B in cash could raise U.S. antitrust concerns, BCMI Research says; MOS now accounts for more than half of North American sales of diammonium and monoammonium phosphates, and its share would rise to around three quarters after the CF deal.
- But MOS CFO Larry Stranghoener says the DoJ in the past had viewed the phosphate business as a global marketplace, easing potential competition concerns.
- MOS plans to buy back shares will not be affected by the deal, the CFO also says.
Oct. 28, 2013, 8:28 AM
- Mosaic (MOS) agrees to acquire the phosphate business of CF Industries (CF) for $1.2B in cash plus $200M to fund CF's asset retirement obligation escrow.
- MOS would acquire the 22K-acre South Pasture phosphate mine and beneficiation plant in Hardee County, Fla., a phosphate manufacturing facility in Plant City, Fla., and ammonia terminal and finished product warehouse facilities in Tampa; CF also will provide MOS with up to ~1M metric tons/year of ammonia.
- MOS expects the acquisition to add ~$0.30/share to 2015 earnings, and says the proximity of the South Pasture mine to MOS's planned Ona phosphate mine will allow MOS to save $500M by not having to construct a $1B beneficiation plant.
- CF says the sale of its phosphate operations represents good value and will enable it to sharpen the strategic focus on its nitrogen business.
- MOS +2.5%, CF +2.1% premarket.
Aug. 22, 2013, 9:45 AM
- Mosaic's (MOS +1%) takeover prospects suffered a blow when BHP Billiton (BHP +2.3%) renewed its commitment to building its own potash mine, Bloomberg writes; a is now “wishful thinking” on the part of MOS shareholders, a Credit Suisse analyst says.
- The Jansen mine would be the largest single source of potash, with a projected production capacity of 10M metric tons/year; the project may end up costing BHP ~$16B, while MOS' enterprise value has fallen to $14.8B.
- BHP could have used Jansen as a bargaining chip to persuade MOS to sell itself because the project will introduce more competition and supply.
Aug. 6, 2013, 10:31 AM
- BAML urges BHP Billiton (BHP) to make a bold response to the implosion of one of the world’s two big potash cartels: Buy an established potash producer such as Mosaic (MOS) as an alternative to building the Jansen mine in Saskatchewan.
- Jansen could eventually produce as much as 10M tons/year of potash, but likely will cost ~$15B to build. BAML says that’s on a par with its enterprise value of MOS, which could produce up to 12M tons/year; MOS also has a phosphate business worth as much as $8B that could be sold.
- "Mosaic could provide instant critical scale via a large scale, low-cost, long-life asset," the firm says. (earlier)
May 8, 2013, 10:27 AM
Mosaic (MOS +1.6%) represents the best option for an acquirer seeking to gain a foothold in the potash industry, and BHP is the most likely suitor, Bloomberg speculates. On May 26, charitable trusts associated with Cargill’s founding family can begin the process of selling restricted MOS shares they got when Mosaic split from Cargill Inc. in 2011, opening the door to a sale of the whole company.| May 8, 2013, 10:27 AM
Mar. 28, 2013, 12:49 PM
Mosaic (MOS +1.5%) would have concerns about a potential takeover of Israel Chemicals by Potash (POT), CEO Jim Prokopanko says in its earnings call. POT, which is attempting to gain majority control of ICL, is a partner with MOS and Agrium in Canpotex, the offshore selling agency for potash the three companies mine in western Canada.| Mar. 28, 2013, 12:49 PM
Dec. 9, 2011, 9:47 AM
Mosaic (MOS -2.2%) is cut to Neutral from Overweight at J.P. Morgan, which also lowers its 2012 EPS forecast to reflect lower estimates for phosphate prices and potash volumes. Prices are moving lower and may continue to do so following capacity additions in the Middle East, JPM says as it reduces price targets for MOS, POT -1.1% and [[AGU] -1.6%.| Dec. 9, 2011, 9:47 AM
Oct. 11, 2011, 10:53 AM
May 11, 2011, 10:53 AM