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posted by cmn32480 on Thursday September 15 2016, @02:46PM   Printer-friendly
from the gimme-an-aspirin dept.

German drugs and crop chemicals company Bayer has won over U.S. seeds firm Monsanto with an improved takeover offer of $66 billion including debt, ending months of wrangling after increasing its bid for a third time. The $128 a share deal announced on Wednesday, up from Bayer's previous offer of $127.50 a share, is the biggest of the year so far and the largest cash bid on record.

The transaction will create a company commanding more than a quarter of the combined world market for seeds and pesticides in a fast-consolidating farm supplies industry. However, competition authorities are likely to scrutinize the tie-up closely, and some of Bayer's own shareholders have been critical of a takeover plan which they say is too expensive and risks neglecting the company's pharmaceutical business.

"Bayer's competitors are merging, so not doing this deal would mean having a competitive disadvantage," said Markus Manns, a fund manager at Union Investment, one of Bayer's top 12 investors, according to ThomsonReuters data.

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  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday September 15 2016, @09:05PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday September 15 2016, @09:05PM (#402474)

    "Five-Alarm Threat to Our Food Supply": Monsanto-Bayer Merger Advances []

    The merger between the two chemical behemoths has been long anticipated, and antitrust experts [as well as] environmental groups have been warning against the takeover for months.

    A legal opinion by two former Justice Department officials released in August decried the merger as "a five-alarm threat to our food supply and to farmers around the world."
    "We are pleased that next week the Senate Judiciary Committee will be reviewing the alarming trend of consolidation in agriculture that has led to less competition, stifled innovation, higher prices, and job loss in rural America," said National Farmers Union president Andrew Johnson. "We underscore the importance that all mergers, including this recent Bayer/Monsanto deal, be put under the magnifying glass of the committee and the U.S. Department of Justice."
    "The Farben family chemical cartel [that includes Bayer and Monsanto] was responsible for exterminating people in concentration camps", adds [Sydney Peace Prize-winning environmental activist Dr. Vandana] Shiva. "It embodies a century of ecocide and genocide, carried out in the name of scientific experimentation and innovation."

    Monsanto Takeover Would Be "Disaster for Global Food System" []

    "In an industry that was already dominated by only six big agribusinesses, this latest news will lead to even further market concentration as more mergers and takeovers will now become inevitable. We're speeding towards a situation where our global food system is controlled by a very few giant corporate entities who will have complete control of our food - what we eat and how it is grown.

    "This is extremely bad news for farmers and consumers across the globe. We already know that these agri-businesses use aggressive techniques to further their market share and increase profit margins and do not act in the best interests of small-scale farmers, public health, or the environment. The fight to regain control of our food system, and push for alternatives such as food sovereignty, is now more important than ever.

    "We call on anti-competition regulators to recognise that this takeover would present a serious threat to public interest and must step in and prevent it from taking place."

    I'm reminded once again of "Rollerball" (1976) and how a megacorporation controls the existence of every individual in a region as well as controlling an entire industry.

    -- OriginalOwner_ []

  • (Score: 2) by driverless on Friday September 16 2016, @10:52AM

    by driverless (4770) on Friday September 16 2016, @10:52AM (#402708)

    The Farben family chemical cartel

    I never knew that the Interessen-Gemeinschaft Farbenindustrie, aka. IG Farben, was actually a family chemical cartel named after Albert and Ethel Farben. You learn something new every day. I'm guessing it's a different IG Farben than the one that introduced the world to antibiotics and won several Nobel prizes in chemistry and medicine for their work. The "century of genocide" only lasted a few years in the 1940s.

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Friday September 16 2016, @05:03PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Friday September 16 2016, @05:03PM (#402868)

      "Well, there's spam, egg, sausage, and spam. That's not got MUCH spam in it."

      -- OriginalOwner_ []