Monsanto has rejected a $62 billion takeover offer

caption
Monsanto CEO Hugh Grant.
source
REUTERS/Brendan McDermid

Monsanto is playing hardball.

The agrochemical company has rejected a $62 billion takeover offer from the German pharmaceutical giant Bayer.

Bayer announced the unsolicited offer on Monday.

The $122-a-share offer was a 37% premium to Monsanto’s share price before news broke of Bayer’s interest.

Bayer CEO Werner Baumann on Monday said, “We fully expect a positive answer of the Monsanto board of directors.”

Here is the statement from Monsanto:

Monsanto Company (NYSE: MON) today announced that its Board of Directors unanimously views the Bayer AG proposal as incomplete and financially inadequate, but is open to continued and constructive conversations to assess whether a transaction in the best interest of Monsanto shareowners can be achieved.

“We believe in the substantial benefits an integrated strategy could provide to growers and broader society, and we have long respected Bayer’s business,” said Hugh Grant, Monsanto Chairman and CEO. “However, the current proposal significantly undervalues our company and also does not adequately address or provide reassurance for some of the potential financing and regulatory execution risks related to the acquisition.”

There is no assurance that any transaction will be entered into or consummated, or on what terms. The Monsanto Board of Directors has not set a timeline for further discussions and Monsanto does not intend to make further comment at this time.

Morgan Stanley & Co. and Ducera Partners are acting as financial advisors, and Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz is acting as legal advisor, to Monsanto.