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Under the condition it sells Nunhems

EC approves Bayer’s proposed acquisition of Monsanto

On Wednesday, the European Commission conditionally approved Bayer’s proposed acquisition of Monsanto. The conditions cover in particular the divestment of certain Bayer businesses, including the greenhouse vegetable breeding department Nunhems.

The European Commission was set to announce whether it approves the Bayer and Monsanto merger in the first part of this year. The lack of competition in seeds, crop protection and traits was one reason for them to further investigate Bayer's proposed acquisition of Monsanto. Following this investigation, Bayer has sold selected Crop Science businesses to BASF for EUR 5.9 billion last year and announced the selling of the complete vegetable seeds business. Currently Bayer is in exclusive talks with BASF on the sale of its entire vegetable seeds business.

Milestone
"Receipt of the European Commission’s approval is a major success and a significant milestone," said Bayer CEO Werner Baumann. "Together with Monsanto, we want to help farmers across the world grow more nutritious food in a more sustainable way that benefits both consumers and the environment." Bayer has now received approvals for the transaction from substantially more than half of the some 30 regulatory authorities, including those in Brazil and China.

Canola, cotton and soybean
The conditions cover also the divestment of certain Bayer businesses, including the global field crop seeds business such as canola, cotton, and soybean (with minor exceptions restricted to the Asia region), the R&D platform for hybrid wheat, the global vegetable seeds business, the global glufosinate ammonium business as well as certain glyphosate-based herbicides in Europe, predominantly for industrial use. In addition, Monsanto’s global business with the nematicide NemaStrike must be divested. The conditions also stipulate the transfer of three Bayer research projects in the area of non-selective herbicides and the granting of a license to Bayer’s digital farming portfolio. BASF is the intended purchaser of these assets.

The transaction remains subject to customary closing conditions, including receipt of required regulatory approvals. Bayer and Monsanto are working closely with the authorities - including the Department of Justice in the United States - with the goal of closing the transaction in the second quarter of 2018.

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