As part of its planned merger with Monsanto, Bayer plans to sell its seed and non-selective herbicide business to BASF for 5.9 billion Euros, or about $6.96 billion US. The move is expected to allay regulatory concerns from the European Union.
The deal includes Liberty herbicide—known chemically as glufosinate-ammonium—and the LibertyLink trait, InVigor canola hybrids, cotton and soybean varieties in the Americas, and the research and breeding capabilities of these crops, according to a news release. It does not include Bayer’s Kansas City, Missouri, manufacturing facilities.
The transaction is subject to the closing of Bayer’s acquisition of Monsanto and approval by relevant authorities. It is expected to close in the first quarter of 2018.
Until now, BASF was not a major player in the biotech seed market.
“It will be a strategic complement to BASF’s well-established and successful crop protection business as well as to our own activities in biotechnology,” Dr. Kurt Bock, chairman of the board of executive directors of BASF SE, said in a news release. “The acquisition will further enhance our agricultural solutions offer, which is a core pillar of BASF’s portfolio.”
More than 1,800 commercial, R&D, breeding and production personnel will transfer from Bayer to BASF. These employees are primarily located in the United States, Germany, Brazil, Canada and Belgium.
In addition, BASF will acquire the manufacturing sites for glufosinate-ammonium production and formulation in Germany, the United States and Canada; seed breeding facilities in the Americas and Europe; and trait research facilities in the United States and Europe.