US: Bayer set to sell seed assets ahead of merger

Bayer will put some of its seed businesses up for sale an attempt to address likely antitrust concerns over its $66B merger with Monsanto, Bloomberg reports.

The Leverkusen, Germany-based company will send out information packages on three assets, which it may sell separately, to potential bidders, the people said, asking not to be identified because the deliberations are private. None of Monsanto’s assets will be sold in the process, they said.

Among the products being offered are the cottonseed business Bayer acquired from Monsanto for more than $300 million in 2007, as well as canola seed operations and LibertyLink, a herbicide-resistant crop gene, the people said. Representatives for Bayer and Monsanto declined to comment.

Bayer’s resolve to start selling assets before antitrust regulators have made recommendations highlights the German company’s drive to conclude the deal as quickly as possible. A sale of the three assets, which have overlaps with Monsanto’s products, was widely expected to avoid a run in with regulators. In cottonseed, US government data showed that Bayer and Monsanto together control about 58 percent of sales in the country.

Full Content: Bloomberg

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