German pharma giant Bayer confirms intention to take over Monsanto

German pharmaceutical giant Bayer has confirmed its intention to take over US agrochemical and agricultural company Monsanto, in a move that would create the world's largest provider of pesticides and crops seeds.

The Leverkusen-based company, whose primary business includes pharmaceutical and health care products, confirmed Thursday that its executives had met with their Monsanto counterparts behind closed doors to talk about the possibility of a "consensual" takeover.

Monsanto confirmed in a statement that it has received an "unsolicited, non-binding proposal" for a potential takeover and that its board of directors was reviewing options.

If the acquisition succeeds, the companies would have joint annual revenues of more than 59 billion euros (66 billion dollars), according to the most recent figures.

The Wall Street Journal, which broke the story about the talks, said that as a joint entity, the companies would provide more than a quarter (28 per cent) of the world's pesticides, citing figures from Morgan Stanley.

It is unclear whether regulators would agree to such a tie-up. Monsanto's position on an acquisition is also unclear.

The Missouri-headquartered company recently reduced its profit projection for this year and is currently going through a restructuring.

It has come under fire for its Roundup weed killer product, which contains the controversial pesticide glyphosate. An EU panel of national experts is currently considering whether to extend its authorization in the bloc.

Last update: Sat, 03/09/2016 - 01:26

More from Business

ECB to hold rates, decides against extending bond-buying scheme

The European Central Bank left its key interest rates at historic lows on Thursday and left its 80-billion-euro-a-...

Nissan finishes purchase of 34-per-cent stake in Mitsubishi Motors

Nissan Motor has completed its purchase of a 34-per-cent stake in scandal-plagued Mitsubishi Motors for 237 billion...

EU seeks to strengthen trade defence measures as China threat looms

The European Commission proposed a new compromise Wednesday to protect EU industry against unfairly cheap imports,...

Study shows Europeans work 19 per cent fewer hours than Americans

Europeans work on average 19 per cent fewer hours per year than Americans, a new study by three economists from the...

Final decision on VW settlement expected within week

Volkswagen seems well on the way to get final approval on a proposed settlement in the emissions test scandal, but...